Dr. Alinsod describes what the Burch procedure is to treat urinary incontinence.
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Learn About What the Burch Procedure Is The Burch procedure is a procedure for incontinence. It is when you take tissues, just lateral, just to the sides of the urethra, you put sutures in those tissues and you pull it up. It is like a tension-free tape except you're suturing it. It’s not tension-free. These are sutures to the tissue beside the urethra that are then pulled up and tied to a ligament. In this case, it’s called the Cooper’s ligament for a classic Burch procedure. So, these ligaments are then what are holding up the tissue beside the urethra to give you continence. Now it can be done mostly with an open procedure, a belly incision; some very skilled surgeons can do it laparoscopically. And then some can do a vaginal approach to the Burch procedure. It’s kind of going by the wayside. It was the gold standard, but since these minimally invasive procedures have come along such as a sling, which you can do in about 15 minutes, you don’t have to open them up and have a two-day or four-day hospital stay. So the Burch procedure and its cousin, it’s called the Marshall-Marchetti-Krantz procedure are kind of going by the wayside. It’s still a great procedure. It still works well, but it’s a lot more invasive.