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Urol Ann. 2020 Jan-Mar;12(1):49-53. doi: 10.4103/UA.UA_58_19. Epub 2019 Dec 23.

Outcome of salvage ureteral reimplantation after endoscopic treatment failure for high-grade vesicoureteral reflux compared to primary ureteral reimplantation.

Author information

Pediatric Urology Division, King Abdullah Specialized Children Hospital, King Abdul Aziz Medical City, National Guard Health Affair, Riyadh, KSA.
Division of Pediatric Urology, Department of Urology, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre, Riyadh, KSA.
Division of Urology, Department of Surgery, College of Medicine, King Saud University Medical City, King Saud University, Riyadh, KSA.
Alfaisal University, School of Medicine, Riyadh, KSA.
Department of Urology, King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Center Riyadh, KSA.



Surgical treatment of vesicoureteral reflux is required after conservative treatment has failed. However, there is a controversy if fibrosis related to previous attempts of dextranomer/hyaluronic acid (Dx/Ha) injection increases the risk of surgical difficulty and postoperative complications. Therefore, the purpose of our study was to compare the outcome of salvage ureteral reimplantation (SUR), after failed endoscopic therapy, to that of primary ureteral reimplantation in patients with high-grade primary vesicoureteral reflux (VUR).

Materials and Methods:

We conducted a retrospective analysis of children, <14 years old, treated for Grade IV or V VUR, between 1998 and 2014. Cases were classified into the SUR or the PUR group. Cases of secondary VUR were excluded. All patients were treated using a cross-trigonal ureteral reimplantation technique by two surgeons. The following demographic and clinical variables were included in the analysis: presentation, reflux severity, scarring on imaging, age at endoscopic injection, total amount of Dx/Ha injected, operative time, postoperative hospital stay, operative complications, incidence of febrile urinary tract infections (UTIs) after surgery, and persistent VUR. Between the groups, differences were evaluated using Fisher's exact test.


Twenty-six patients were included, 19 in the SUR and 7 in the primary ureteral reimplantation (PUR) group. In the SUR group, 12 cases had a bilateral VUR and 7 had a unilateral VUR, with 4 bilateral and 3 unilateral VUR cases in the PUR group. In the SUR group, 13 patients had received one Dx/Ha injections, with the other 6 receiving two injections, of 0.5 ml of Dx/Ha (range, 0.5-2.0 ml). A bilateral reimplantation was performed in 14/19 patients in the SUR group and 4/7 in the PUR group. The median age at surgery was 4 years in the SUR group and 3 years in the PUR group (P < 0.02). The median operative time was comparable between the groups (120 and 140 min for the SUR and PUR groups, respectively, P = 0.73), with a comparable length of hospital stay (5 and 6 days, respectively, P = 0.061). Blood loss was generally <10 ml, except in three cases in the SUR group, due to difficult dissection. Over the median follow-up of 1 year, persistent Grade III SUR was identified in only one patient in the SUR group, with no occurrence of febrile UTIs postoperatively.


SUR for high-grade primary VUR after failed Dx/Ha injection has the same success rate as PUR, with no significant complication rate, although the necessary dissection may be more difficult.


Failed endoscopic treatment; ureteral reimplantation; vesicoureteral reflux

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