Penile reconstruction, such as phalloplasty or metoidioplasty, can be performed for individuals with a history of urinary incontinence. In some cases, these procedures may even help address or improve urinary incontinence issues. However, the impact on urinary function can vary depending on the specific surgical technique used and the individual’s unique circumstances.
Here are some key points to consider:
- Surgical Techniques: The choice of surgical technique and the reconstruction of the urinary tract can influence the individual’s urinary function. Some phalloplasty procedures involve creating a urethra (the tube that carries urine from the bladder) within the neophallus, allowing for a more typical urination pattern. In metoidioplasty, the clitoral complex, which contains the urethra, may be preserved, potentially maintaining urinary function.
- Pre-existing Urinary Issues: The extent to which penile reconstruction can address or improve urinary incontinence depends on the underlying causes of the incontinence. Individuals with a history of urinary incontinence should discuss their specific concerns and goals with their healthcare provider and surgeon.
- Postoperative Care: After penile reconstruction surgery, individuals may need to follow specific postoperative care instructions to ensure proper healing and minimize the risk of complications. This may include catheterization during the initial recovery period and instructions on how to manage urinary function as the healing process progresses.
- Consultation with Specialists: Individuals with pre-existing urinary incontinence should have a thorough evaluation by healthcare professionals, including urologists and surgeons with expertise in gender-affirming procedures. These specialists can provide guidance on the most appropriate surgical approach and address any urinary concerns.
- Communication: Effective communication with healthcare providers and surgical teams is essential to ensure that the surgical plan aligns with the individual’s goals and concerns related to urinary function.