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Obstet Gynecol. 1996 Feb;87(2):272-6.

Diagnosis and management of serious urinary complications after major operative laparoscopy.

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Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio, USA.



To evaluate the incidence, diagnosis, and management of serious urinary complications after major operative laparoscopy.


For this retrospective study of 953 consecutive cases of major operative laparoscopy from January 1, 1990, to December 31, 1994, we reviewed incidence, method of diagnosis, and management of complications. Urinary complications included bladder injuries, urinary fistulas, and ureteral injuries. Major operative laparoscopic procedures included hysterectomy, adnexectomy, treatment of tubal pregnancy, ovarian cystectomy, and ablation-fulguration of severe endometriosis (stage IV).


Serious urinary complications were found during or after operative laparoscopy in 15 of 953 patients (1.6%, 95% confidence interval [CI] 0.8-2.4). Four ureteral injuries, three bladder fistulas, and eight bladder perforations were documented in this series. Eight cases of urinary complications were recognized during the original surgery (one ureteral injury and seven bladder injuries) and repaired at that time. Laparotomy or additional major surgery was performed in seven patients (three ureteral injuries, two bladder fistulas, and two bladder perforations).


Serious urinary complications after major operative laparoscopy were discovered in 1.6% of patients. This incidence compares favorably to serious urinary complications after standard gynecologic surgery. Intraoperative recognition of these complications will likely avoid additional surgery.

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