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Artificial urinary sphincter

ARTIFICIAL URINARY SPHINCTER

 

The implant of an artificial urinary sphincter is an very effective treatment for urinary incontinence

It is normally used to treat severe incontinence in men where conventional treatments have failed. The Artificial Urinary Sphincter AUS works in a very similar way to the body’s own sphincter in that it applies pressure to the urethra keeping it closed until you wish to urinate.

 

How It Works

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The artificial urinary sphincter is a silicone device consisting of three main components

  • An inflatable cuff similar to a miniature armband that fits around the urethr
  • A reservoir that holds sterile water
  • A small pump that controls the inflation and deflation of the cuff

 

The AUS device is a very simple to use. Once activated fluid travels from the reservoir through tubing to the cuff, which has been place around the urethra this results in the cuff applying pressure to the urethra effectively, squeezing it shut thus stopping any flow of urine.

When you fill the need to urinate you operate the pump which is located in the scrotum by squeezing the pump button 2-3 time using finger and thumb, this allows fluid to travel from the cuff back to the reservoir thereby deflating the cuff and allowing urine to flow.

Fluid from the reservoir automatically flows back into the cuff after approximately 3 minutes reflating the cuff and stopping flow of urine.

 

Implanting the AUS

 

The AUS is implanted under the skin and requires a relatively short operation under general anesthetic usually requiring an overnight stay in hospital

Small incisions are made to allow the cuff to be placed around the urethra the pump to be located in the scrotum and reservoir to be placed in the lower abdomen. Once the AUS has been implanted the device will be set in the deactivated mode and you will have a urinary catheter for a short period of time to allow healing.

After about six weeks your doctor will activate the device for the first time and ensure you are fully conversant with its operation and that you can empty your bladder before you go home

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Main advantages of the implantation of the AUS device

 

Most people treated with artificial sphincter regained continence or had a significant improvement in their ability to stay dry.

Fully reversible in the event of device failure or infection the device can be fully removed.

The device is also longlasting upto 10 years

 

Risks and complications of the Artificial Urinary Sphincter procedure

Although very rare as with any surgical procedure there are risks and possible complication these include

Bleeding

Infection

Device Failure

Damage to the urethra around cuff

 

The AUS device is also not suitable for people with:-

Poor manual, dexterity in there fingers

Unstable bladder

 

Important The artificial urinary sphincter and urinary catheterisation

 

If you have had a Artificial Urinary Sphincter it is imperative that any medical staff providing treatment are aware that you have a AUS and that it MUST be deactivated before catheterisation is attempted. Failure to do so may result in serious injury to the urethra.

 

You should consider carrying a medical identification card to notify Medical Staff that you have an artificial sphincter

Getting help

If you wish to make an appointment to seek further advice and or treatment, please contact Mr Ockrim’s secretary.

Consultations

 

The information contained within this website has been provided as a general guide and should not be treated as a substitute for the medical advice of your own GP or any other health professional.