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Neurourol Urodyn. 2006;25(4):361-7.

Predictive value of initial urodynamic pattern on urinary continence in patients with myelomeningocele.

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  • 1Neuro-Urology Unit, Department of Neurology, University Hospital Innsbruck, Innsbruck, Austria.



To investigate whether the initial urodynamic pattern may predict urinary continence and the need for adjunctive incontinence surgery in patients with myelomeningocele.


One hundred and twenty-three patients with myelomeningocele were included in our retrospective study. The patients were divided based on the urodynamic pattern at initial evaluation into four categories: overactive detrusor with overactive (spastic) sphincter (group 1, n = 43), overactive detrusor with underactive/acontractile sphincter (group 2, n = 37), underactive/acontractile detrusor with overactive (spastic) sphincter (group 3, n = 8), and underactive/acontractile detrusor with underactive/acontractile sphincter (group 4, n = 35). Urinary continence status at the last follow-up and the need for adjunctive incontinence surgery were compared between the four groups.


Mean follow-up was 10 years and mean age at the last follow-up 17 years. A socially acceptable continence status (continent or socially dry) was achieved in 74% and was significantly different among the four groups (P = 0.023): 86% and 87% of the patients in group 1 and 3 became continent or socially dry, but only 57% and 74% of those in group 2 and 4, respectively. Although none of the patients in group 3 underwent adjunctive incontinence surgery compared to about 25% in the other groups, statistically the difference was not significant (P = 0.48).


The initial urodynamic pattern is very useful in counseling families by predicting urinary continence in patients with myelomeningocele. The chances of becoming continent or at least socially dry are best for patients with overactive (spastic) sphincter.

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