Urethral syndrome is a term used to describe symptoms of urethritis that does not have evidence of a bacterial or viral infection. The urethra is the tube that carries urine out of the body from the bladder. Urethritis is an inflammation, infection, or irritation of the urethra. It is most commonly seen in women.
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Because there is no evidence of infection, the cause of urethral syndrome is often difficult to determine. Possible causes include:
Risk factors for urethral syndrome include:
The symptoms of urethral syndrome are similar to those of urethritis. Symptoms may include:
Your doctor will ask 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:
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.
Measures that may help prevent urethral syndrome include:
National Institute of Diabetes & Digestive & Kidney Diseases
US National Library of Medicine
Canadian Urological Association
The Kidney Foundation of Canada
Costantine E, Zucchi A, et al. Treatment of urethral syndrome: a prospective randomized study with Nd: YAG laser. Urol Int . 2006;76:134-138.
Gittes RF, Nakamura RM. Female urethral syndrome. A female prostatitis? West J Med . 1996;164:435-438.
Last reviewed September 2013 by Adrienne Carmack, MD
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.
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