Turkish Journal of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation 2011 , Vol 57 , Num 4

Relationship of Lesion Level and Severity with Bladder Behavior in Patients with Spinal Cord Injury

Necmettin Yıldız 1 ,Hakan Alkan 1 ,Nuray Akkaya 2 ,Necdet Çatalbaş 3 ,Füsun Ardıç 2
1 Pamukkale Üniversitesi Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, Denizli, Türkiye
2 Pamukkale Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Fiziksel Tıp ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, Denizli, Türkiye
3 Pamukkale Üniversitesi Tıp Fakültesi, Fizik Tedavi ve Rehabilitasyon Anabilim Dalı, Denizli, Türkiye
DOI : 10.4274/tftr.49369

Objective: It was aimed to investigate the relationship of lesion level and severity with bladder behavior based on urodynamic findings in patients with spinal cord injury (SCI).


Materials and Methods: Forty nine patients who were on inpatient rehabilitation programme in our clinic with the diagnosis of SCI after the spinal shock period were included in the study. Neurological level (cervical, thoracal, lumbosacral) and severity of the lesion (complete, incomplete) were set according to the American Spinal Injury Association (ASIA) classification. It was assessed if the level and severity of the SCI related to neurogenic bladder type, maximum cystometric capacity (MCC) and compliance which were designated with urodynamic study and methods of bladder management.


Results: There was no difference in terms of age, sex, disease duration, neurogenic bladder type, MCC, compliance, method of bladder management on admission according to the level and severity of the lesion among patients with SCI (p>0.05).Level and severity of SCI were significantly associated with the method of bladder drainage at discharge (r: 0.33, p<0.01 and r: 0.40, p<0.005, respectively). 90.5% of patients with complete SCI and 64.3% of patients with incomplete SCI were using clean intermittent catheterization (CIC), 32.1% of the patients with incomplete SCI urinated spontaneously, whereas none of the patients with complete SCI could urinate. It was found that 83.3% of cervical, 81.8% of thoracic and 60% of lumbosacral injured patients were using CIC. The greatest rate of spontaneous urination (40%) was observed in people with lumbosacral injuries compared to cervical and thoracic levels (8.3 and 9.1%, respectively).The significance of this difference could not be tested statistically due to the small sample size. Level (r: 0.33) and severity (r: 0.40) of SCI, MCC (r: 0.33) and compliance (r: 0.34) were all significantly correlated with the method of bladder management at discharge.


Conclusion: MCC, compliance, and level and severity of injury were found to be related with the method of bladder management at discharge in patients with SCI. On the other hand, when the lesion level and severity are insufficient in determining the bladder behavior, the necessity of urodynamical evaluation arises. 

Keywords : Spinal cord injury, neurogenic bladder, bladder behavior