Anatomic relationships of the distal third of the pelvic ureter, trigone, and urethra in unembalmed female cadavers

David D. Rahn, April T. Bleich, Clifford Y. Wai, Shayzreen M. Roshanravan, Cecilia K. Wieslander, Joseph I. Schaffer, Marlene M. Corton

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

9 Scopus citations


Objective: The objective of the study was to examine the relationship of the ureter to paravaginal defect repair (PVDR) sutures and to evaluate the anatomy of distal ureter, trigone, and urethra relative to the anterior vaginal wall. Study Design: Dissections of the retropubic space were performed in 24 unembalmed female cadavers following placement of PVDR sutures. Lengths of the vagina, urethra, and trigone were recorded. Results: The mean distance between apical PVDR sutures and the ureter was 22.8 (range, 5-36) mm. The average lengths of the urethra, trigone, and vagina were 3 cm, 2.8 cm, and 8.4 cm, respectively. The trigone was positioned over the middle third of the anterior vaginal wall in all specimens and the distal ureters traversed the anterolateral vaginal fornices. Conclusion: The ureters may be injured during paravaginal defect repairs, anterior colporrhaphies, and other procedures involving dissection in the upper third of the vagina. Cystotomy during vaginal hysterectomies is most likely to occur 2-3 cm above the trigone.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)668.e1-668.e4
JournalAmerican journal of obstetrics and gynecology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2007



  • anatomy
  • anterior colporrhaphy
  • paravaginal defect repair
  • trigone
  • ureteral injury

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Obstetrics and Gynecology

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