Transabdominal Sonocystography: A Novel Technique to Assess Vesicourethral Extravasation Following Radical Prostatectomy

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We describe our new technique of transabdominal sonocystography in men following radical prostatectomy.

Materials and Methods:

From May 2007 to January 2008, 75 men underwent gravity transabdominal sonocystography and fluorocystography 8 days following open radical retropubic prostatectomy. Bladder volume after the instillation of 150 cc saline was determined by measuring bladder height, width and length in the longitudinal and transverse planes. Extravasation volume was calculated by subtracting the calculated bladder volume after filling from a volume of 165 ml, which represents the instilled saline volume of 150 ml plus 15 ml in the urinary catheter balloon. Extravasation was then qualitatively graded as none, slight, moderate or severe after instilling 150 cc contrast medium into the bladder.


The correlation between fluorocystography and transabdominal sonocystography was ascertained by determining the mean extravasation volume corresponding to the qualitatively graded categories of extravasation determined fluoroscopically. Mean extravasation volume in cases with no, slight and moderate extravasation on fluoroscopic cystography was −3.72, 6.51 and 46.0 ml, respectively. At an extravasation volume of 20 ml the sensitivity and specificity of transabdominal sonography to differentiate no or slight vs moderate or severe fluoroscopic extravasation was 100%.


The advantages of transabdominal sonocystography over fluorocystography are lower cost, lack of radiation exposure and the ability to perform the procedure at most urological outpatient facilities. Therefore, transabdominal sonocystography represents a good alternative to fluorocystography for assessing the integrity of the vesicourethral anastomosis following open radical retropubic prostatectomy.

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