- What is the study of sacral and pudendal roots under sedation?
- Why is it performed?
- What does it consist of?
- Preparation for sacral and pudendal root study under sedation
- Care after the procedure
- Alternatives to this diagnostic procedure
What is a sacral and pudendal root study under sedation?
The sacral root study under sedation is a study that looks for nerve responses of the lumbar sacral roots, which are responsible for innervating many structures of the pelvic floor, genitals, sphincters, etc.
The pudendal nerves are the nerves that carry the innervation, sensitivity, mobility of the external genitalia and anal sphincter, as well as other structures.
The union of several of the last sacral lumbar roots form the pudendal nerves.
Why is it performed?
It is performed to find the causes of anal or urethral sphincter disturbances, some sexual dysfunctions, alterations in the sensitivity of the genitals and, in some cases, chronic pelvic pain.
What does it consist of?
With a special electrode, electrical stimuli are given in the anal area. The pudendal nerve is sought and stimulated by an electric current. This electric current causes a contraction of the external anal sphincter, which is recorded by another electrode.
With a needle-shaped electrode, the muscular contraction of the anal sphincter is recorded to study the behavior of the muscle fibers and to see if they contract correctly or if there is a deficit.
The bulbocavernosus, bulbospongiosus and other pelvic floor muscles can also be studied with this electrode.
To complete the study, repetitive stimuli are performed in certain areas of the external genitalia, with other special electrodes. Finally, the nerve response is studied in the nerve itself, in the medulla, and in the cerebral cortex.
So that this study does not involve a painful or unpleasant experience, it can be performed under sedation.
Preparation for the study of sacral and pudendal roots under sedation
To perform the study, it is necessary to fast for 6 hours for solid food and 2 hours for water.
It is preferable to come with the hair in the genital area trimmed or shaved, avoiding cuts. Excess hair may hinder the test.
A vein in the hand or arm is cannulated and the drug that causes sedation is administered. The level of sedation can vary from being calm and relaxed to being completely asleep. Spontaneous breathing occurs at all times.
It is performed under sedation, because the test is usually painful, uncomfortable, and causes embarrassment.
Care after the procedure
It is necessary to come accompanied and should not drive after performing the sedation.
The anal and genital area should be kept clean.
You may have some discomfort or a small hematoma. However, this usually resolves in a couple of days.
Alternatives to this diagnostic procedure
This procedure can be done awake and without sedation, but can be painful and uncomfortable.
Similarly, a colonoscopy or gastroscopy can also be performed without sedation. However, fewer and fewer specialists do it this way.
It is necessary to consult with a specialist if this treatment is appropriate for your particular case.