Urology Research & Practice
GENERAL UROLOGY - Original Article

The “Minimal-Touch” Technique for Artificial Urinary Sphincter Placement: Description and Outcomes


Department of Urology, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, USA


Department of Health Sciences Research, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, USA

Urol Res Pract 2023; 49: 40-47
DOI: 10.5152/tud.2023.22136
Read: 232 Downloads: 93 Published: 10 March 2023

Objective: The study aimed to describe “minimal-touch” technique for primary artificial urinary sphincter placement and evaluate early device outcomes by comparing it with a historical cohort.

Materials and methods: We identified patients who underwent primary artificial urinary sphincter placement at our institution from 1983 to 2020. Statistical analysis was performed to identify the rate of postoperative device infection in patients who underwent minimal touch versus those who underwent our traditional technique.

Results: 526/2601 total procedures (20%) were performed using our “minimal-touch” approach, including 271/1554 patients (17%) who underwent primary artificial urinary sphincter placement over the study period. Around 2.3% of patients experienced device infection after artificial urinary sphincter procedures. In the “minimal-touch” era, 3/526 patients (0.7%) experienced device infection, including 1/271 (0.4%) of those with primary artificial urinary sphincter placement. In comparison, 46/2075 patients (2.7%) experienced device infection using the historical approach, with 29/1283 (2.3%) of primary artificial urinary sphincter placements resulting in removal for infection. Notably, 90% of device infections occurred within the first 6 months after primary placement. The difference in cumulative incidence of device infections at 12 months did not meet our threshold for statistical significance for either the total cohort of all AUS procedures (primary and revision) or the sub-group of only those patients undergoing primary artificial urinary sphincter placement (Gray K-sample test; P=.13 and .21, respectively).

Conclusion: The “minimal-touch” approach for artificial urinary sphincter placement represents an easy-to-implement modification with potential implications on device outcomes. While early results appear promising, longer-term follow-up with greater statistical power is needed to determine whether this approach will lower the infection risk.

Cite this article as: Ziegelmann MJ, Hebert KJ, Linder BJ, Rangel LJ, Elliott DS. The “minimal-touch” technique for artificial urinary sphincter placement: Description and outcomes. Urol Res Pract., 2023;49(1):40-47

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