OBJECTIVE: To review the clinical and symptomatic outcome of patients undergoing cystectomy and continent urinary diversion using the Mitrofanoff principle. PATIENTS AND METHODS: There were seven men and five women (median age 62 +/- 21 years: range 21-79). The underlying diagnoses were: bladder carcinoma (8), neuropathic bladder disease (1), bladder exstrophy (1), tuberculosis (1) and interstitial cystitis (1). An ileo-caecal segment was used for construction of the reservoir. The appendix was used as a catheterizable conduit in 11 patients and a narrowed ileal tube in one patient. Symptomatic outcome was assessed by using a modified Visick grading. The median follow-up period was 15 +/- 10 months (range 6-39). RESULTS: The median hospital stay was 22 days. There were no post-operative deaths, but major post-operative complications developed in three patients and included intra-abdominal lymphocele (1), intra-abdominal abscess formation (1) and prolonged ileus (1). In the late post-operative period (> 30 days), four patients developed stenosis of the mucocutaneous junction and required dilatation. The overall symptomatic outcome was satisfactory in 11 patients. There were no deaths in the peri-operative period and none of the patients has since required revision. Urinary continence was achieved in all 12 patients during the day. One patient reported minimal, occasional leakage at nights. The median catheterization interval was 4 +/- 1 hours during the day (range 3-5) and 7 +/- 1 hours at night (range 6-9). CONCLUSION: Our experience with the Mitrofanoff procedure has been limited to a small number of patients. Despite this, the clinical outcome of the procedure was satisfactory. The procedure potentially offers an effective continence mechanism with acceptable post-operative morbidity.