Current Urology Reports

, 18:74 | Cite as

Non-neurogenic Chronic Urinary Retention: What Are We Treating?

  • John T. StoffelEmail author
Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms & Voiding Dysfunction (J Sandhu, Section Editor)
Part of the following topical collections:
  1. Topical Collection on Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms & Voiding Dysfunction


Purpose of Review

This review examines current terminology used to define non-neurogenic chronic urinary retention (CUR), describes the pathophysiology of urinary retention, and highlights contemporary diagnostic and treatment algorithms.

Recent Findings

There is no standardized definition for the condition, but volumes >300 ml are commonly used to describe CUR. It is a clinical diagnosis which does not require urodynamics. Pathophysiologic causes of CUR be from myogenic, neurogenic, bladder outlet obstruction, or a combination of these sources. Treatment algorithms recommend stratifying patients with chronic urinary retention by risk and by symptoms before initiating treatment. Common CUR outcome endpoints need to be better utilized so that treatment modalities can be compared.


Non-neurogenic CUR is a heterogeneous condition that has multiple definitions, underlying physiologies, and possible endpoints. Standardization is needed to better understand and treat CUR.


Urinary retention Bladder outlet obstruction Underactive bladder 


Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of Interest

John Stoffel reports grants from PCORI and Uroplasty.

Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of UrologyUniversity of MichiganAnn ArborUSA

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