Advances in endoscopic instrumentation and techniques have expanded our armamentarium for safe and effective treatment of urethral strictures. Endoscopic incision or dilation should remain the preferred treatment for uncomplicated primary strictures. Balloon dilation can be useful in the treatment of dense strictures. Incision using laser energy has yet to provide better results than procedures employing a cold knife. As such, it would be difficult to justify the added expense of laser urethrotomy. Endoscopic placement of free skin grafts into the bed of the urethra after transurethral resection or deep incision of the stricture is a novel approach that has shown a great deal of promise. Endourethroplasty is a reasonable alternative to open urethroplasty when treating long strictures, as more than 90% of the reported patients have had a successful outcome with no recurrence. However, larger experience with this procedure is necessary to verify its efficacy and for greater acceptance. The placement of indwelling stents is another new promising treatment option. Overall short-term success rates range from 75% to 100%, but the follow-up period is short, and little is known about the long-term risks of an indwelling foreign body in the urethra. Endoscopic incision via cutto-the-light or core-through procedures is an excellent alternative in patients with obliterative strictures. Data from several centers reveal that the majority of patients gain relief of obstruction while maintaining continence and erectile potency. However, at least 25% of these patients will need further endoscopic management to maintain urethral patency.
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