Reconstruction of the Meatus Urethrae After Oncologic Vulvectomy: Outcome of 42 Vaginal Flap Advancements in 41 Women

Maurits Lange, J. Joris Hage, Loes Hartveld, Henry J. M. A. A. Zijlmans, Marc van Beurden

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


BACKGROUND AND AIM: Resection of the distal part of the urethra is performed in 15% to 55% of women with vulvar cancer to achieve radicality of vulvectomy. Urinary reconstruction in these women may be complicated by urethral stenosis resulting from circular inset of the meatus. We report on our experience with 2 surgical techniques of noncircular inset to prevent such stenosis. METHODS: From January 2005 to January 2020, 42 urethral meatus reconstructions were performed in 41 women after vulvectomy for (pre)malignant skin disorders by a "limited" (n = 17) or "extended" (n = 25) anterior vaginal wall advancement technique, including V-Y insertion of part of the vaginal flap in a posterior longitudinal urethrotomy. Preoperative characteristics, procedural details, and surgical outcomes were reviewed. RESULTS: We observed 1 neomeatal stenosis and 1 case of partial vaginal wall flap necrosis as major complications following the "limited" technique and 1 circumferential neomeatal dehiscence and occlusion as major complication after the "extended" technique. Both the neomeatal stenosis and the dehiscence/occlusion are felt to have been preventable and not caused by a flaw of design of the advancement technique. CONCLUSIONS: We advocate applying these vaginal wall advancement techniques to prevent circular inset of the neomeatus. The "extended" technique offers a solution in cases where the periurethral vulvar defect cannot be closed by transpositioning of labial skin.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)538-543
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Plastic Surgery
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2022


  • female urethral reconstruction
  • meatus urethrae
  • urethra
  • vulvoperineal reconstruction

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