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This article is the author's final published version in Journal of Clinical Medicine, Volume 12, Issue 6, March 2023, Article number 2137.

The published version is available at https://doi.org10.3390/jcm12062137.

Copyright © 2023 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (https:// 4.0/).


Background: How quickly providers adapt to new practice guidelines is not well known. The objective of this study was to evaluate temporal trends in the performance of urethral endoscopic management and urethroplasty surrounding the release of the American Urological Association (AUA) Male Urethral Stricture Guidelines in 2017. We also evaluate in parallel trends in female urethral stricture disease, where AUA guidelines are not present. We hypothesized that the ratio of urethroplasty versus urethral endoscopic management in both males and females is increasing and that guidelines do not result in immediate changes in management trends. Methods: Endoscopic management and urethroplasty data were collected from the TriNetX database on adult males and females five years before (starting 1 January 2012) and after (ending 31 December 2022) the 2017 AUA guidelines. Cohorts were built using Current Procedural Terminology (CPT) codes and grouped into urethral endoscopic management (Males: CPT 52275, 52281, 52282, 53600, 53601, 53620, 53621; Females: CPT 52270, 53660, 53661, 53665) or urethroplasty (Males: CPT 53000, 53010, 53400, 53410, 53415, 53420, 53450, 53460; Females: CPT 53430). Data on patient age, race, and geographic distribution were also collected. Results: In total, 27,623 (Males: 25,039; Females: 2584) endoscopic managements and 11,771 (Males: 11,105; Females: 666) urethroplasties were reviewed across 51 Health Care Organizations. The mean age of endoscopic management and urethroplasty patients was 67.1 and 55.7, respectively (p < 0.01). The urethroplasty-to-endoscopic management ratio decreased for males between 2012 and 2013 and then steadily increased until 2017. The ratio steadily increased for females from 2012 to 2017. The urethroplasty-to-endoscopic management ratio showed a slight decline from 2017 to 2020 across both males and females before rising again through 2022 to a study high (Males: 0.62; Females: 0.63). Regional differences were identified, with the West having the highest urethroplasty-to-endoscopic management ratios for both males and females, the Northeast having the lowest urethroplasty-to-endoscopic management ratio for males, and the Midwest having the lowest ratio for females. Conclusions: The utilization of urethroplasty for males and females is increasing. An immediate benefit on post-guideline urethroplasty rates was not observed, and the utilization of female urethroplasty increased despite the absence of AUA guidelines. These illustrate that the impact of guideline dissemination takes time and supports the need for continued provider outreach and education on urethral stricture disease and management.

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