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Sydney, Australia

Objectives:To describe the presence of sperm in the prostatic urethra as a stand-alone ejaculation entity and to assess its characteristics.Methods:Thirty-three patients with anejaculation during sexual stimulation were enroled. Penile vibratory stimulations were carried out following bladder catherization and instillation of a pink buffering medium (Ferticult). Two-step catheterisation was then performed: a catheter was inserted through the urethral sphincter into the prostatic urethra to aspirate its content, and then bladder catheterisation was performed to collect the Ferticult. The procedure was repeated in some patients after at least 1 week. The characteristics of the semen collected from each organ were analysed and compared.Results:A total of 42 trials were obtained from 22 patients. Sperms were found in the prostatic urethra in 21 samples (50%) from 12 patients (11 with spinal cord injury, 1 with diabetes). The colour of all 21 prostatic urethra sperm samples differed from the Ferticult. Sperm motility was greater in 8 samples, sperm count was higher in 10 and pH was different in 10, compared with the bladder samples. The higher overall quality of the sperm allowed cryopreservation in 10 prostatic urethra samples compared with only 5 bladder samples. Four of the five patients who underwent repeated trials had a reproducible pattern of prostatic urethra ejaculation.Conclusion:The presence of sperm in the prostatic urethra most probably results from ‘ejaculation dyssynergia’, a lack of coordination between bladder neck and external sphincter. Sperm from the prostatic urethra should be systematically sought to improve the outcome of assisted reproduction.Spinal Cord advance online publication, 21 June 2016; doi:10.1038/sc.2016.78. © 2016 International Spinal Cord Society

Sundell C.-G.,Umea University | Jonsson H.,Spinal Unit | Adin L.,Rontgenavdelningen
International Journal of Sports Medicine | Year: 2013

Symptomatic spondylolysis is a stress reaction caused by microtrauma during physical exercise, an imaging diagnostic subgroup of Adolescent Low Back Pain (ALBP), found in adolescent athletes. Early diagnosis increases the possibility of healing. Thus, it is important to divide ALBP into subgroups. The aim of this study was to evaluate clinical tests that can distinguish symptomatic spondylolysis from other forms of ALBP in order to facilitate early referral for diagnostic imaging. The investigation subjects were a prospective case series with a control group, 25 subjects with ALBP and 13 subjects that had no history of LBP. The 2 groups were examined using the same clinical protocol. MRI of the whole lumbar spine was performed in both the case and control groups and CT investigations of the L4 and L5 vertebrae were performed in the case group. Significant differences between the 2 groups were found in 8 of our clinical tests. No clinical test, alone or in combination, could distinguish between spondylolysis and other forms of ALBP. As 88% of the subjects in the case group had MRI findings and almost 50% had spondylolysis, MRI should be performed at an early age in young athletes with ALBP. © Georg Thieme Verlag KG Stuttgart · New York.

Freeman B.J.C.,Spinal Unit | Freeman B.J.C.,University of Adelaide | Ludbrook G.L.,Spinal Unit | Ludbrook G.L.,University of Adelaide | And 5 more authors.
Spine | Year: 2013

STUDY DESIGN.: Multicenter, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. OBJECTIVE.: To examine the safety and efficacy of three different doses of the tumor necrosis factor alpha (TNF-α) inhibitor etanercept versus placebo for the treatment of symptomatic lumbar disc herniation (LDH). SUMMARY OF BACKGROUND DATA.: TNF-α is considered to be a major cause of radicular leg pain associated with symptomatic LDH. Systemic administration of TNF-α inhibitors for sciatica has indicated a trend toward efficacy. METHODS.: Forty-nine subjects aged between 18 and 70 years, with persistent lumbosacral radicular pain secondary to LDH, and an average leg pain intensity of 5/10 or more were randomized to 1 of 4 groups: 0.5-mg, 2.5-mg, 12.5-mg etanercept, or placebo. Subjects received 2 transforaminal epidural injections, 2 weeks apart, and were assessed for efficacy up to 26 weeks after the second injection. The primary outcome measure was the change in mean daily worst leg pain (WLP). Secondary outcomes included average leg pain, worst back pain, average back pain, in-clinic pain, Oswestry Disability Index, patient global impression of change, and tolerability. RESULTS:: Forty-three of the 49 randomized patients completed the study. Patients receiving 0.5-mg etanercept showed a clinically and statistically significant (P< 0.1) reduction in mean daily WLP compared with the placebo cohort from 2 to 26 weeks for both the per protocol population (-5.13 vs. -1.95; P= 0.066) and the intention-to-treat population (-4.40 vs. -1.84; P= 0.058). Fifty percent of these subjects reported a 100% reduction in WLP 4 weeks post-treatment compared with 0% of subjects in the placebo cohort. Improvements in all secondary outcomes were also observed in the 0.5-mg etanercept cohort. The overall incidence of adverse events was similar in placebo and all etanercept cohorts. CONCLUSION.: Two transforaminal injections of etanercept provided clinically significant reductions in mean daily WLP and worst back pain compared with placebo for subjects with symptomatic LDH. Epidural etanercept may offer patients with sciatica a safe and effective nonoperative treatment. © 2013, Lippincott Williams & Wilkins.

Sharma H.,Spinal Unit | Lee S.W.J.,Spinal Unit | Lee S.W.J.,University of Glasgow | Cole A.A.,Spinal Unit
Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery - Series B | Year: 2012

Spinal stenosis and disc herniation are the two most frequent causes of lumbosacral nerve root compression. This can result in muscle weakness and present with or without pain. The difficulty when managing patients with these conditions is knowing when surgery is better than non-operative treatment: the evidence is controversial. Younger patients with a lesser degree of weakness for a shorter period of time have been shown to respond better to surgical treatment than older patients with greater weakness for longer. However, they also constitute a group that fares better without surgery. The main indication for surgical treatment in the management of patients with lumbosacral nerve root compression should be pain rather than weakness. ©2012 British Editorial Society of Bone and Joint Surgery.

Arienti C.,Istituto Superiore di Ospeopatia | Dacco S.,Istituto Superiore di Ospeopatia | Piccolo I.,Spinal Unit | Redaelli T.,Spinal Unit
Spinal Cord | Year: 2011

Study design: This study was designed as an experimental study (trial). Objectives: To verify the effects of the association between conventional pharmacological treatment and osteopathic manipulative treatment (OMT) for chronic pain management in spinal cord injury (SCI). Setting: This study was carried out at Spinal Unit, Ospedale Niguarda Ca' Granda, Milan, Italy. Istituto Superiore di Osteopatia, Milan, Italy. Methods: We enrolled 47 patients with SCI, 26 with pain of both nociceptive and neuropathic origin, and 21 with pure neuropathic pain. In all, 33 patients had a complete spinal cord lesion (ASIA level A) and 14 had incomplete lesion (ASIA level B, C and D). The patients were subdivided in a pharmacological group (Ph), a pharmacological osteopathic (PhO) group and a osteopathic (Os) group. The verbal numeric scale (VNS) was used at various time intervals to evaluate treatment outcomes. Results: Ph patients reached a 24% improvement in their pain perception, assessed by the VNS scale after 3 weeks of treatment, whereas Os patients reached a 16% improvement in their pain perception for the same weeks. Both treatments per se failed to induce further improvements at later time points. In contrast, the combination of the two approaches yielded a significantly better pain relief both in patients with nociceptive or pure neuropathic pain in the PhO group. Conclusions: Our results suggest the OMT is a feasible approach in patients in whom available drugs cannot be used. Moreover, a benefit can be expected by the association of OMT in patients treated according to existing pharmacological protocols. © 2011 International Spinal Cord Society All rights reserved.

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