Acellular Dermal Matrix Tissues in Genitourinary Reconstructive Surgery: A Review of the Literature and Case Discussions

Nora M. Haney, Mitchell M. Huang, James L. Liu, Dorota J. Hawksworth, Arthur L. Burnett

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Introduction: There have been major advancements in the field of urologic reconstruction and gender-affirming surgeries over the past 10 years. These operations have become increasingly complex involving multiple revisions, with limited healthy native tissue availability. Grafts are frequently needed when a patient's own tissue is expected to have poor wound-healing properties. To reduce the morbidity associated with autologous grafts and complications associated with synthetic grafts, acellular dermal matrices (ADMs) can be used as substitutes in genitourinary surgery as they demonstrate decreased immunogenicity and retaine structural integrity. Objectives: The purpose of this review is to describe the importance and potential uses of ADMs by reviewing the literature and highlighting key examples of our institution's expanded application of ADM grafts in genitourinary reconstruction. Methods: We performed a literature review for the use of ADMs in genitourinary surgery including the search terms acellular dermal matrix, alloderm, extracellular matrix, penis, penile reconstruction, intrapenile prosthesis, phalloplasty, neophallus, urethroplasty, artificial urinary sphincters, Peyronie's disease, and urology. We highlight 5 representative genitourinary reconstructive cases performed at this institution where ADMs contributed to surgical success. Genitourinary reconstructive surgeries that have used ADMs in the literature included neophallus construction for gender affirmation, phalloplasty for trauma, penile augmentation, and plaque excision and grafting for Peyronie's disease. Results: Biomechanical studies across different graft types are limited in genitourinary applications. Initial studies using ADMs indicate benefits of limited inflammatory response, finite elasticity, and substantial tensile strength, acceptably mimicking properties of the native tissue. Conclusion: Our experience and the current literature suggest that human ADM is a valuable option for tunica albuginea replacement, but its use to support free grafts should be cautioned secondary to graft take. Haney NM, Huang MM, Liu JL, et al. Acellular Dermal Matrix Tissues in Genitourinary Reconstructive Surgery: A Review of the Literature and Case Discussions. Sex Med Rev 2021;9;488–497.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)488-497
Number of pages10
JournalSexual Medicine Reviews
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jul 2021


  • AlloDerm
  • Allograft
  • Extracellular matrix
  • Inflatable penile prosthesis
  • Neophallus
  • Penis
  • Peyronie's disease
  • Plaque excision and grafting
  • Urethra
  • Urethroplasty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Reproductive Medicine
  • Endocrinology
  • Obstetrics and Gynecology
  • Urology


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