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Eur Urol. 2006 Jan;49(1):133-8. Epub 2005 Nov 2.

Peri-operative complications and pain after the suburethral sling procedure for urinary stress incontinence: a French prospective randomised multicentre study comparing the retropubic and transobturator routes.

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Service de Gynécologie-Obstétrique, Hôpital Tenon, Université Saint-Antoine Paris IV, 4 rue de la Chine, 75020 Paris Cedex 20, France.



To compare peri-operative complications, pain, and the immediate functional results of the sub-urethral sling procedure for urinary stress incontinence by the retropublic and transobturator routes, using a non-elastic polypropylene sub-urethral sling.


This prospective, multicentre study involved 88 women undergoing the sub-urethral sling procedure for stress urinary incontinence (SUI). The retropubic route (RPR) and the transobturator route (TOR) were used in respectively 42 and 46 cases. The characteristics of the women in the RPR and TOR groups were as follows: mean age (+/-standard deviation) 56.8+/-12 years and 53.4+/-10 years, respectively; mean BMI: 25+/-4 and 26+/-4; mean parity: 2.1+/-0.9 and 2+/-1 children; post-menopausal status: 66.7% and 58.7%; prior surgery for SUI: 7.1% and 6.5%; and prior hysterectomy: 21.4% and 26.1%. None of these characteristics differed significantly between the groups. Likewise, pre-operative urinary functional status (SUI stage, and pollakiuria, nocturia and urgency rates) was similar in the two groups.


Mean hospital stay and overall morbidity rate were not significantly different between the RPR and TOR groups. Mean operating time was longer in the RPR group. Bladder injury was significantly more frequent in the RPR group and vaginal injury was significantly more frequent in the TOR group. Pain scores were significantly lower in the TOR group. The objective functional results at one month did not differ between the groups. Quality of life, evaluated with questionnaires and numerical rating scales, was similarly improved in the two groups.


The suburethral sling procedure was less painful by the TOR route than by the RPR route. Bladder injury, haematomas and abscesses were only observed in the RPR group, while vaginal injury only occurred in the TOR group. The immediate functional results of the two approaches were similar.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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