A clinico-neurophysiological study of urogenital dysfunction in MOG-antibody transverse myelitis.
Li V., Malladi P., Simeoni S., Pakzad M., Everett R., Chanjira S., Leite MI., Palace J., Panicker JN.
OBJECTIVE: To assess the clinical, urodynamic and neurophysiologic features of patients with persisting bladder, bowel and sexual dysfunction following transverse myelitis in MOG-antibody disease. METHODS: Patients with a history of MOG-antibody disease related transverse myelitis seen prospectively in a tertiary centre Uro-Neurology service between 2017 and 2019 were included. They received cross-sectional clinical assessment, completed standardised questionnaires on bladder, bowel and sexual symptoms and underwent urodynamic and pelvic neurophysiologic investigations. RESULTS: Twelve patients (9 males) were included with a total of 17 episodes of transverse myelitis. Mean age at first attack was 26 years (SD 9) and median follow-up duration was 50 months (IQR 32-87). Acute urinary retention requiring bladder catheterisation occurred in 14 episodes and was the first symptom in 10 episodes. Patients with lesions affecting the conus medullaris required catheterisation for significantly longer durations than those without a conus lesion (median difference 15.5 days, p = 0.007). At follow-up, all patients had recovered full ambulatory function, but persisting bladder and bowel dysfunction had moderate or severe impacts on quality of life in 55% and 36% respectively and 82% had sexual dysfunction. Pelvic neurophysiology demonstrated abnormal residual conus function in 6 patients. Urodynamic findings predominantly showed detrusor overactivity and/or detrusor-sphincter dyssynergia, indicative of a supraconal pattern of lower urinary tract dysfunction. CONCLUSIONS: Persisting urogenital and bowel dysfunction is common despite motor recovery. Although a proportion of patients had neurophysiologic evidence of residual conus abnormalities at follow-up, predominant urodyamic findings suggest that ongoing lower urinary tract dysfunction results from supraconal injury.