Cowper's syringocele in the pediatric population: a retrospective study of 122 patients

M. E. H. M. Wagemans, G. Tsachouridis, C. F. Kuijper, K. L. de Mooij, A. J. Klijn, T. P. V. M. de Jong

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Introduction and objective: Syringocele is a rare cystic dilatation of the duct of Cowper's gland, afflicting mostly the pediatric population. Syringoceles have a wide range of symptoms and may cause urethral obstruction. The authors analyzed to clarify the clinical manifestation, diagnostic approach, management, and incidence in the pediatric population. Materials and methods: All patients (122 cases) diagnosed with a syringocele at the department of Pediatric Urology in a tertiary referral university children's hospital between August 1991 and October 2016 were analyzed retrospectively by assessing medical charts. Results: The clinical manifestation, diagnostic findings, and follow-up are summarized in the table. Half of the patients (50.0%) also had typical posterior urethral valves (PUVs) and/or a single valve in the 12 o'clock position (flap-valve). The symptoms of open and closed syringoceles showed no significant difference. Treatment consisted of incision of the syringocele with a diathermia hook. The incidence of urinary tract infection (UTI) before and after surgery in the group that had a syringocele only was significant different. The overall incidence of syringoceles seen at urethrocystoscopy in this series was 3.0%. Discussion: This series suggests that the presenting age is strongly related to the consequences of syringoceles, as the youngest half of the patients had significantly more UTIs at presentation than older patients, who presented with significantly more obstructive voiding symptoms, postvoiding residuals, and incontinence. In addition, the younger group had a significantly higher incidence of vesicoureteral reflux and dilatation of the upper urinary tract. The found association between syringoceles and PUV may be due to overgrowth of epithelium, as possible origin in both anomalies. Conclusion: With an incidence of 3.0%, syringoceles, in this tertiary referral series, should be considered in the differential diagnosis of obstructive urethral lesions. The presentation ranges between signs of severe obstructions in the prenatal and postnatal period to mild urinary incontinence problems at later age. Urethrocystoscopy proved to be useful in confirming the diagnosis and allows for immediate transurethral incision. [Table presented]
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)546-551
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of pediatric urology
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2019


  • Cowper's syringocele
  • Infravesical obstruction
  • Pediatric
  • UTI
  • Voiding dysfunction

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