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We evaluated the management of recurrent bulbar urethral stricture disease after urethroplasty at our institution.

Materials and Methods:

We performed an institution review board approved, retrospective case study of our urethroplasty database to collect stricture related and postoperative information with an emphasis on bulbar urethral stricture disease recurrence after urethroplasty between 1996 and 2012. Repair types included primary anastomotic, augmented anastomotic and onlay repair. Recurrence, which was defined as the need for intervention, was diagnosed with cystoscopy or retrograde urethrogram.


We identified 437 men who underwent urethroplasty of bulbar urethral stricture disease as performed by 2 surgeons from January 1996 to December 2012. Of the men 395 had available followup data. Recurrence was identified in 25 men (6.3%), of whom all presented with symptoms, including a weak stream in 23, urinary tract infection in 1 and pyelonephritis in 1. Median time to recurrence was 10 months. Recurrence was initially treated endoscopically in 23 of 25 cases (92%), dilatation in 12 and visual urethrotomy in 11. In 5 patients (22%) further recurrence developed after endoscopic treatment, which was managed by repeat urethroplasty in 2, self-calibration only in 2 and visual urethrotomy with subsequent self-calibration in 1. We identified 2 distinct phenotypes of recurrent stricture, including type A—short focal recurrence, which may be salvaged with an endoscopic procedure, and type B—the long graft length type, which is less likely to be salvaged with endoscopy.


Recurrence after urethroplasty is most likely to develop within the first 12 months. Type A short focal recurrence may be managed by a salvage endoscopic procedure, including dilation or visual urethrotomy. These data on the phenotype of recurrence may be useful for patient treatment.


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