Injury to the pelvic nerves usually results in mixed sympathetic, parasympathetic and pudendal nerve impairment. The most common manifestation of this disorder is a failure to void following removal of the urethral catheter and the development of painless urinary retention. The condition is often misdiag-nosed as prostatic obstruction in men or "psychogenic" retention in women; caution should be used before resorting to transurethral surgery in either of these circumstances. Further outflow resistance may not only fail to produce normal voiding, which is the result of the damage to the parasympa-thetic innervation of the detrusor rather than outflow obstruction, but also may further damage an already neuropathic distal sphincter and precipitate urinary incontinence.
In an attempt to reduce the incidence and the severity of these disturbances, "nerve sparing" resection techniques have been developed, aimed at avoiding damage to the nervous plexus.
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