What is Urethritis?

Urethritis occurs when the urethra gets infected and inflamed.

What is the urethra?

The urethra is a canal that carries urine from the bladder. In men it is inside of the penis and it also carries semen and sperm out of the penis. In women the urethra only carries urine from the bladder.

A lot of guys can have urethritis and have no symptoms at all. If you have any of the symptoms below, you should see a health care provider immediately as complications can develop if the urethritis is left untreated. You should discontinue sexual intercourse until after you get medical treatment. You don't have to see a urologist if you don't want to, a "health care provider" can also assess and treat you. Females can also get urethritis, see bladder infections for more on that topic.

Signs and Symptoms of Urethritis:

  Painful or burning urination
  Pus or mucous coming out of your penis. (A stain might be noticeable on your underwear).
  The opening at the end of your penis (meatus) may be stuck together by the dried secretions.
  The opening at the end of your penis may appear red.

What Causes Urethritis?
There are many causes of urethritis. Irritation by substances, such as creams, lotions, soap and spermicides can cause urethritis. This type of urethritis can not be spread to anyone else. Sexually transmitted diseases, like gonorrhea and chlamydia, can also cause urethritis and can be spread to sexual partners. See the STD section for more on those two nasty but treatable diseases.

At the health care provider's office when you have symptoms, or if you chose to see a physician or urologist, this is what will most likely take place:

If there are no secretions that the health care provider can take a sample of, then the person may insert a swab into the urethra -- about 3 to 4 mm deep. (This is done so a "culture" can be taken to determine exactly what is causing the infection). The swab can cause some pain, but it is very important to do this test. You will probably be given medication for the infection. Sometimes tests are done 2 weeks after treatment to make sure the infection has gone away completely.

While females get urethritis too, it seems to be more common in males when it's not also part of a urinary tract infection. Males have a longer urinary tract than females do (for obvious reasons) if you think of the male anatomy.

You might see one day see a lab technician if they were also doing more tests on your urine or blood if your urethritis was recurring or your health care provider was concerned about another condition.

UTI-Clear for UTI, Bladder Infections, Cystitis and Urethritis *(This stuff works great, it worked for me. ~ Amy, RN)


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