Bony abnormalities in classic bladder exstrophy: The urologist's perspective

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article


Introduction: As the primary practitioner managing patients with classic bladder exstrophy (CBE), it is incumbent upon the pediatric urologist to understand the associated orthopedic anomalies and their management. Methods: A Pubmed search was performed with the keyword exstrophy. Resulting literature pertaining to orthopedics and published references were reviewed. Results: Anatomic changes to the bony pelvis include outward rotation, acetabular retroversion with compensatory femoral anteversion, anterior pubic shortening, and pubic diastasis. Imaging options have improved, which impacts surgical planning. Surgical approach, including type of osteotomy and method of pubic approximation, is evolving. Most centers employ immobilization after surgery, with external fixation, Bryant's traction, Buck's traction, and spica casting being the most common methods. Orthopedic complications range from minor pin-site infections to neurologic and vascular compromise. Most experts agree osteotomy aids bladder closure beyond 72 h of life, but effect on continence remains controversial. Although no significant orthopedic benefit has been expounded, it may be too early to appreciate improvement in frequency or severity of osteoarthritis or hip dysplasia. Conclusion: While orthopedic surgeons remain vital to managing exstrophy patients, knowledge of the anatomy, imaging, surgical approaches, and immobilization enable effective communication with parents and other physicians, improving care for these complicated patients.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-122
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of pediatric urology
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2013


  • Bony abnormalities
  • Bony pelvis
  • Classic bladder exstrophy
  • Osteotomy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Urology

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