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URETHRAL STRICTURE OR STRICTURE URETHRA: A COMMON CAUSE OF PAINFUL URINATION IN MEN

  • Shivani Tyagi
  • July 3, 2019

Urethral stricture or stricture urethra is an abnormal condition of the urethra (the tube through which urine passes through the bladder and excretes out of the body) marked by narrowing of the urethra. This narrowing leads to certain urinary complications like difficulty with passing urine and others, which we will discuss in details in the next section of the blog. This condition occurs in men and rare in women.


These issues range from minor to life-threatening; therefore, such symptoms seek urgent medical attention for a quick diagnosis and a prompt treatment.

There is no medicine available that can treat urethral strictures; surgical procedures are highly effective in treating the stricture urethra. Urethroplasty is the best treatment to achieve a long-term solution in the case of stricture urethra.

SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF STRICTURE URETHRA

A urethral stricture is marked with mild to severe issues related to urination. These sign and symptoms of stricture urethra are listed as follows:

  • Straining to urinate : A person with stricture urethra may have to push harder than usual to start and continue a urine stream.
  • Urine frequency is increased.
  • Urinary tract infection (UTI) : A UTI in men can be a sign indicating a problem with the urethra.
  • The urge to urinate is sudden.
  • Slow or weak urine stream
  • Pain during urination
  • Blood in urine
  • Urine spraying
  • Urinary retention : inability to completely vacate the bladder.
  • Inability to urinate : A person may experience the inability to urinate at all.
  • Abdominal pain due to urinary retention.
  • Urethral leaking : Urine leakage without a clear explanation.

CAUSES OF STRICTURE URETHRA

There are certain reasons for urethral stricture to occur in a man. However, few patients do not realize that their symptoms are a matter of concern and they seek a consultation with the urologist immediately.

Few common causes are discussed as follows:

  • Iatrogenic: Few urethral strictures are caused by a few surgeries such as prostate surgery
  • hypospadias repair as such procedures are followed by catheterization which may cause scarring in urethra leading to the formation of stricture. The use of urinary catheters, when used for an extended period of time, leads to urinary strictures.
  • Idiopathic: In some cases of strictures, the cause is unknown and unexplained.
  • Inflammation or infection: The reasons for infection-causing stricture urethra include the following:
  • Cancer and treatment of cancer
  • Gonorrhoea generated infection
  • Sexually transmitted disease
  • UTI
  • Prostate enlargement or enlarged prostate
  • Traumatic: Any injury damaging the urethra cause the stricture, such as a pelvic fracture.

DIAGNOSIS OF STRICTURE URETHRA

Initially, the Urologist examined the patient physically and list out the clinical features of a patient based on the history given by him. Then few investigations are recommended by the urologist to evaluate the urethral stricture.

RGU (Retrograde Urethrogram) is an X-ray of the urethra using contrast dye, determines the length of the stricture.

Uroflowmetry is done to see the urinary flow in a patient.

TREATMENT OF STRICTURE URETHRA

When diagnosed with stricture urethra a prompt treatment is essential considering the potential complications including kidney functions insufficiency, bladder stones, recurring infections, and urethral fistulas.

NON-SURGICAL TREATMENT

Since there are no medicines available currently to treat a urethral stricture therefore non-surgical treatment is very limited. The only effective treatment apart from the surgery is dilation of the urethra.  The urethra is dilated using special rods called sounds into the urethra.

This method is outdated as it does not relieve symptoms permanently.

SURGICAL TREATMENT
  1. URETHROTOMYAlso known as DVIU i.e, Direct visualization internal urethrotomy. It is a minimally invasive procedure where the stricture is cut with a laser using a scope so that it no longer stops the urine flow through the urethra.The procedure is generally done under general anaesthesia.The laser or the instrument used to cut the stricture is withdrawn on completion of the procedure followed by catheterization.
  2. URETHROPLASTYThe urethroplasty is an open surgery done for the removal of urethral stricture with the reconstruction of the urethra. Urethroplasty is considered as the gold standard treatment method for stricture urethra.Book an appointment with our reconstructive urologist at the medical treatment centre.Though the procedure is a complex one but produces the best long-term outcomes and lowest rate of reoccurrence.The Reconstructive Urologist depending on the location, the severity, and the cause of the stricture decides the type of Urethroplasty.

RECOVERY AFTER THE SURGERY

Generally, the patients are able to return to their routine life within a few weeks after surgery.

SUCCESS RATE OR RESULTS OF URETHROPLASTY OVER URETHROTOMY

Urethrotomy may relieve the symptoms of stricture urethra but temporarily. There are more chances of recurrence.

While Urethroplasty provides the permanent solution for patients with stricture urethra provided done by the reconstructive urologist who has been doing urethroplasty frequently.

Our Urologists at the medical treatment centre are experts in Urethral surgeries with a good success rate in urethroplasty.  Book an appointment with our best reconstructive urologist at the medical treatment centre.

For any assistance you can write to us oninfo@medicaltreatmentcentre.com

or can contact us through whatsapp/ viber/call on+91 9886624303.

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