OBJECTIVE: Severe prolapse may mask potential genuine stress urinary incontinence in women. Some have suggested that a suspending urethropexy be performed in women who have potential genuine stress incontinence demonstrated by barrier reduction of the prolapse preoperatively. Our aim was to compare outcomes after prolapse surgery that included a formal bladder neck suspension with those operations that did not. STUDY DESIGN: This prospective randomized clinical trial assigned 32 women with bladder neck hypermobility and stage III or IV pelvic organ prolapse to receive either a needle colposuspension or bladder neck endopelvic fascia plication as part of the vaginal reconstructive surgery. Twenty-nine subjects underwent detailed clinical, anatomic, urodynamic, and quality-of-life evaluations before and 6 weeks and 6 months after surgery; 23 completed urinary diary and quality-of- life evaluations after a mean of 2.9 years. RESULTS: Needle colposuspension increased short-term complications without providing additional protection from de novo stress incontinence. Barrier testing before surgery predicted urethral sphincteric resistance after surgery; however, such testing neither predicted a patient's function after surgery nor indicated the need for a suspending urethropexy. The combination of a needle colposuspension with a sacrospinous ligament suspension predisposed to the early development of support defects of the upper anterior vaginal segment and to failure of bladder neck support. CONCLUSIONS: Preoperative barrier testing in women with severe prolapse is not useful in identifying individuals who require a suspending urethropexy. Needle colposuspension increases short-term complications, lacks durability, and may predispose to early and severe recurrent anterior prolapse when performed with a sacrospinous ligament vault suspension.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Supported by National Institute on Aging grant No. UO1-AG-05170.
- Potential stress incontinence
- needle bladder neck suspension
- prolapse surgery
- recurrent prolapse
- sacrospinous ligament vaginal suspension