Substance abuse effects on urinary tract: methamphetamine and ketamine
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AbstractIntroduction: Ketamine is known to cause urinary tract dysfunction. Recently, methamphetamine (MA) abuse has become a growing problem in Asia. We investigated the symptomatology and voiding function in patients who abused MA and ketamine and compared their urinary tract toxicity profiles.

Methods: In the period of 23 months from 1 October 2016, all consecutive new cases of patients presenting with MA- or ketamine-related urological disorder were recruited into a prospective cohort. Polysubstance abuse patients were excluded. Data were analysed by comparison between patients with ketamine abuse and MA abuse. Basic demographic data and initial symptomatology were recorded, and questionnaires on urinary symptoms and the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCA) were used as assessment tools.

Results: Thirty-eight patients were included for analysis. There was a statistically significant difference in mean age between patients with MA and ketamine abuse (27.2 ± 7.2 years and 31.6 ± 4.8 years, respectively, P=0.011). Urinary frequency was the most common urological symptom in our cohort of patients. There was a significant difference in the prevalence of dysuria (ketamine 43.5%, MA 6.7%, P=0.026) and a significant trend in the difference in hesitancy (ketamine 4.3%, MA 26.7%, P=0.069). Overall, questionnaires assessing urinary storage symptoms and voiding symptoms did not find a statistically significant difference between the two groups. The MoCA revealed that both groups had cognitive impairment (ketamine 24.8 ± 2.5, MA 23.6 ± 2.9, P=0.298).

Conclusions: Abuse of MA caused urinary tract dysfunction, predominantly storage symptoms. Compared with ketamine abuse, MA abuse was not commonly associated with dysuria or pelvic pain.
All Author(s) ListYee CH, Ng CF, Hong YL, Lai PT, Tam YH
Journal nameHong Kong Medical Journal
Volume Number25
Issue Number6
Pages438 - 443
LanguagesEnglish-United Kingdom
Web of Science Subject CategoriesMedicine, General & Internal;General & Internal Medicine

Last updated on 2021-13-10 at 23:52