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Large subcapsular hematoma following ureteroscopic laser lithotripsy of renal calculi in a spina bifida patient: lessons we learn

Authors Vaidyanathan S, Samsudin A, Singh G, Hughes P, Soni B, Selmi F

Received 5 November 2015

Accepted for publication 8 March 2016

Published 24 August 2016 Volume 2016:9 Pages 253—259


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 4

Editor who approved publication: Professor Ronald Prineas

Subramanian Vaidyanathan,1 Azi Samsudin,2 Gurpreet Singh,3 Peter L Hughes,4 Bakul M Soni,1 Fahed Selmi1

1Regional Spinal Injuries Center, Southport and Formby District General Hospital, Southport, UK; 2Department of Urology, Whiston Hospital, Prescot, UK; 3Department of Urology, 4Department of Radiology, Southport and Formby District General Hospital, Southport, UK

Introduction: Paraplegic patients are at greater risk of developing complications following ureteroscopic lithotripsy because of urine infection associated with neuropathic bladder, difficulties in access due to altered anatomy of urinary bladder and urethra, spinal curvature, spasticity, and contractures. We report the occurrence of large subcapsular hematoma following ureteroscopy and discuss lessons we learn from this case.
Case report: A 48-year-old male patient with spina bifida underwent ureteroscopy with laser lithotripsy and ureteric stenting for left ureteric stone and staghorn calculus with hydronephrosis; laser lithotripsy was repeated after 3 months; both procedures were performed by a senior urologist and did not result in any complications. Ureteroscopic laser lithotripsy was performed 5 months later by a urological trainee; it was difficult to negotiate the scope as vision became poor because of bleeding (as a result of the procedure). Postoperatively, hematuria persisted; temperature was 39°C. Cefuroxime was given intravenously followed by gentamicin for 5 days; hematuria subsided gradually; he was discharged home. Ten days later, this patient developed temperature, the urine culture grew Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and ciprofloxacin was given orally. Computed tomography (CT) of the urinary tract, performed 4 weeks after ureteroscopy, revealed a 9×7 cm subcapsular collection on the left kidney compressing underlying parenchyma. Percutaneous drainage was not feasible because of severe curvature of spine. Isotope renogram revealed deterioration in left renal function from 30% to 17%. Follow-up CT revealed reduction in the size of subcapsular hematoma, no hydronephrosis, and several residual calculi.
Conclusion: Risk of subcapsular hematoma following ureteroscopic lithotripsy can be reduced by avoiding prolonged endoscopy and performing ureteroscopy under low pressure. When a paraplegic patient develops features of infection after ureteroscopy, renal imaging should be carried out promptly. Extended perioperative medical care is required for spinal cord injury patients because of their propensity to develop sepsis. Antibiotics should be prescribed on the basis of recent urine microbiology results. Spinal cord injury patients should be treated by senior, experienced doctors and cared for in a spinal injuries unit in order to minimize complications.

Keywords: spina bifida, paraplegia, ureteroscopy, lithotripsy, subcapsular hematoma, prevention

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