Urethral syndrome is a set of symptoms from inflammation or irritation of the urethra that are not related to a bacterial or viral infection. The urethra is the tube that carries urine out of the body from the bladder.
|Copyright © Nucleus Medical Media, Inc.|
Because there is no evidence of infection, the cause of urethral syndrome is often difficult to determine. Possible causes include:
- Undetected bacterial or viral infection of the urethra
- Irritation of the urethra, caused by:
In women, irritation of the urethra may be caused by:
- Feminine hygiene sprays or douches
- Sanitary napkins
- Contraceptive gels
Urethral syndrome is most common in women. Factors that may lead to an undetected infection:
Urethral syndrome may cause:
- Pain and/or burning while urinating
- Difficulty urinating (especially after intercourse)
Increase in urinary:
- Blood in the urine
- Swelling and/or tenderness in the groin
- Pain during intercourse
In men, urethral syndrome may specifically cause:
- Discharge from the penis
- Blood in semen
- Pain during ejaculation
- Swollen and/or tender testicles
You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done. It will include a pelvic exam. Urethral syndrome is usually diagnosed when symptoms of urethritis are present without evidence of an infection.
Tests may include:
Treatment may include:
- Antibiotics for a possible undetected infection
- Antispasmodics to reduce bladder spasms
- Alpha-blocking drugs to relax muscle tone
Avoidance of Irritants
Avoid irritants that may cause urethral syndrome. Then, wait and see if your condition improves.
Surgery may be done in cases where narrowing of the urethra is thought to be causing the urethral syndrome.
To reduce your chance of urethral syndrome:
Avoid the use of:
- Spermicidal jellies
- Bubble baths
- Irritating soaps
- Scents or perfumes
- Feminine hygiene sprays and douches
- Urinary irritant foods and beverages
- Practice safe sex, including using condoms.
- Urinate immediately after sexual intercourse.
- Make sure sexually transmitted diseases are treated quickly and completely for you and your partner(s).
- Drink plenty of fluids.
- Adrienne Carmack, MD
- Reviewed: 09/2016
- Updated: 09/12/2016
Please note, not all procedures included in this resource library are available at Henry Ford Allegiance Health or performed by Henry Ford Allegiance Health physicians.
All EBSCO Publishing proprietary, consumer health and medical information found on this site is accredited by URAC. URAC's Health Web Site Accreditation Program requires compliance with 53 rigorous standards of quality and accountability, verified by independent audits. To send comments or feedback to our Editorial Team regarding the content please email us at HLEditorialTeam@ebscohost.com.
This content is reviewed regularly and is updated when new and relevant evidence is made available. This information is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with questions regarding a medical condition.