Purpose: At times children born with bladder exstrophy-epispadias complex must undergo several operations and the resultant scar tissue on the abdomen can be quite disfiguring. Long-term followup in these patients reveals that many have a poor self-image, and the aesthetic aspects of the genitalia and lower abdomen acquire greater significance with age. We present our retrospective case series of the experience of 1 surgeon during 27 years. Materials and Methods: Our database includes 116 patients born with exstrophy-epispadias complex. Primary reconstruction was performed in 62 infants and neonates, while 54 children and young adults underwent initial surgery elsewhere. Secondary puboplasty was performed in 88 of the 116 patients. Various techniques were used, ranging from simple excision and longitudinal closure in 12 cases, Z-plasty and pubic contouring in 23, the use of axial pattern inguinal skin flaps in 50 and tissue expanders in 3, when necessary. Long-term followup data were available on 76 patients. The parent and, when appropriate, the patient determined satisfaction with the cosmetic appearance. Results: Patient satisfaction with the cosmetic and functional outcomes of surgery was high. Of the 76 patients 73 (96%) were satisfied following puboplasty. Complications included wound infection and keloid formation in 4% and 10% of cases, respectively. Conclusions: Achievement of excellent aesthetic results is possible with secondary puboplasty. Simple closure is associated with a higher incidence of keloid formation compared to the Z-plasty closure technique. Axial pattern skin flaps and Z-plasty techniques yield superior cosmetic results for contouring the mons pubis in patients with exstrophy-epispadias complex.
- bladder exstrophy