ELUTS18: A report from the Functional Urology Masterclass

20 September 2018

The second European Lower Urinary Tract Symptoms Meeting (ELUTS18) started in Milan on September 20th, with a full-day ESU masterclass on functional urology. The 30 specially-selected participants got an intensive course, taught by experienced faculty from the European School of Urology, with plenty of time for case discussions as provided by the audience members.

Dr. John Heesakkers (Nijmegen, NL), Chairman of the ESU-ESFFU Masterclass, welcomed the participants and explained the nature of the course: “We’re trying to share things that we come across every day in functional urology practice, not the rare or complicated cases. We will feature your submitted cases, these are either cases that are solved or still need an answer.”

The meeting’s regular scientific programme will start the day after, featuring a parallel programme on LUTS and reconstructive surgery (organized by ESFFU and ESGURS sections respectively). The ESU Masterclass will continue on the afternoon of the 21st, allowing its participants to also visit the main ELUTS programme in the morning.

Anatomy review and testing

Prof. Costantini (Perugia, IT) started the morning’s session with a half-hour overview of female anatomy, covering the pelvic floor, the vaginal septum and more. The talk offered tips and tricks, and basic knowledge that every pelvic reconstructive surgeon should have. An show of hands revealed that around a quarter of the participants were actively involved in prolapse surgery.

Mr. Thiruchelvam (Cambridge, GB) gave a similar talk on male anatomy, turning the talk into an impromptu (and strictly informal) quiz, checking the participants’ current level of knowledge. Dr. Heesakkers gave an overview on neuroanatomy and physiology.

Participants were also presented with a brief pre-masterclass test that gauged their current knowledge. The questions covered the use of questionnaires for female sexuality, the primary causes of vesico-vaginal fistula and bladder pain syndrome, among other function-related topics.

Popularity of case discussions

With participants coming from a wide range of countries (as far away as the Philippines) and as many different urology centres, the case discussions that feature in between the more conventional lectures raised a lot of interest.

The presenters prepared their cases, which included two on patients who suffered with MS as well as (neurogenic) LUTS. Cases also dealt with sexual function (and desire) in patients that suffer from undiagniosed cysts. The case discussions each took much longer than anticipated: there were a lot of questions from the audience and discussion led by the faculty.

These audience-sourced case discussions were an addition to the ESU-ESFFU Masterclass last year, the first time it was held together with ELUTS. Their popularity and educational value are a clear benefits for the masterclass participants.