What is the function of the Urethra?
The urethra is the name for the tube that travels from the bladder through the penis to the outside of your body. Its function is to expel urine and semen. It starts from the lower opening of the bladder and travels the entire length of the penis. The urethra also has a sphincter that remains closed to hold urine within the bladder and relaxes to let urine leave the bladder.
What is a Urethral Stricture?
A urethral stricture is the narrowing of a part of the urethra. This can cause a blockage or reduced flow of urine. A urethral stricture can be caused by trauma from injury or accidents where the urethra suffers damage, a previous surgery or procedures involving the urethra.
Symptoms of a urethral stricture can include:
- Spraying or double streaming urine
- Blood in the urine known as haematuria
- Blood in the semen
- Urinary incontinence (loss of bladder control)
- Pelvic pain
- Discharge from the urethra
- Reduced ejaculation force
- Difficulty starting urine flow
- Painful urination
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
- Urinary retention
- Incomplete bladder emptying
- Decreased urine stream
- Dribbling of urine
What is a Urethroplasty?
The Urethroplasty surgery involves the removal of the involved segment of the urethra and then re-attachment of the two ends. This surgery is best suited for strictures that are short and involve the bulbar or membranous urethra in particular.
When this repair is not possible due to size of the stricture, the tissue can be relocated to enhance and consequently widen the narrow segment to a normal width. The tissue can come from a graft of the buccal mucosa (the skin inside the cheek).
The choice of repair is individual and influenced by the length and location of the stricture, the availability of local tissue, and other factors.
What is Buccal Mucosa Graft (BMG)?
A Buccal Mucosa graft is transplanted from the inside of the mouth. The tissue within the mouth is compatible with the tissue of the urethra, so it is able to be transferred to support the urethra in this surgery. The mouth heals very well over a 6-week period. Dissolving sutures will disappear with time.
MURAC Health uses the combined skills of a Urologist and a Plastic Surgeon to solve complex problems that men experience with their urogenital system.
Our Medical Founders invented a new approach to helping Patients with Urethral Strictures caused by radiation therapy for prostate cancer. The Chee-Chauhan flap has attracted worldwide attention and involves growing a urethra from tissue taken from inside a Patient's mouth, and then transplanting it using an innovative surgical method to replace the damaged urethra.