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AUA Urges Congress to Establish National Commission on Urotrauma to Address Medical Needs of U.S. Military Personnel

LINTHICUM, MD, April 29, 2010—The American Urological Association (AUA) is pleased to announce its support for newly introduced legislation designed to address urotrauma, a growing concern among active military personnel and veterans. The bill, H.R. 5106, which would direct the U.S. Secretary of Defense to establish a commission on urotrauma, was formally introduced by Congressman Zack Space (D-OH-18) and Congresswoman Carol Shea-Porter (D-NH-1) on April 21, 2010. The AUA authored the legislation.

Urotrauma is a significant issue, particularly among active military populations. Improvised explosive devices (IEDs), when detonated, can cause severe trauma to the sexual organs and genitourinary system. Additionally, the heavy weight of armor and gear can cause strain to the abdominal muscles over time, which can ultimately impact urinary function, leading at times to pelvic prolapse. 

H.R. 5106 would establish an Interagency Commission, led by the U.S. Department of Defense, to investigate and advise on the research and action needed to advance this increasingly essential field. The urotrauma legislation includes the following key provisions:

  • Creation of “The National Commission on Urotrauma,” which will conduct a comprehensive study of the present state of knowledge and research on urotrauma, evaluate existing education and research resources, and identify knowledge and programmatic gaps.
  • A long-range plan, based on the Commission’s comprehensive study, for the use and organization of national resources to effectively deal with urotrauma, including: 1) researching innovations in the care and treatment of persons affected by urotrauma, 2) identifying ways to prevent or minimize these types of injuries, and 3) improving education and training to medical personnel caring for these individuals and to the general public.

“This bill highlights the importance of urotrauma research and treatment, and specifically addresses the medical needs our young military service personnel returning from Iraq and Afghanistan,” said AUA spokesperson Steven M. Schlossberg, MD, MBA. “Moreover, H.R. 5106 emphasizes the importance of urologic diseases and the federal government’s role in helping to promote the best quality patient care to our military.”

“We are thankful to Representative Space and Representative Shea-Porter for bringing the issue of urotrauma to the attention of federal leaders,” he added.

For more information about the urotrauma legislation, please contact AUA Communications at 410-689-3932 or The following spokespeople are also available for interviews:

  • Beth Kosiak, PhD, AUA associate executive director of health policy

About the American Urological Association: Founded in 1902 and headquartered near Baltimore, Maryland, the American Urological Association is the pre-eminent professional organization for urologists, with more than 16,000 members throughout the world. An educational nonprofit organization, the AUA pursues its mission of fostering the highest standards of urologic care by carrying out a wide variety of programs for members and their patients.

Wendy Isett, AUA