Urethritis is the inflammation of the urethra.
Typically, it results from the colonization of the urethra by microorganisms.
Commonly, these microorganisms are transferred with sexual contact.
However, there are cases of urethritis where the inflammation results from other causes, such as:
- Injury (e.g. patients who perform self-catheterization)
- Foreign body (e.g. in patients with permanent catheter)
Depending on the microorganism responsible, urethritis is divided into:
- Gonococcal urethritis: caused by a microorganism called Neisseria Gonorrhoeae
- Non-gonococcal urethritis: usually caused by the microorganism called Chlamydia Trachomatis
Other microorganisms can also cause urethritis, such as adenoviruses, microorganisms in gut flora, herpes, cytomegalovirus, mycoplasma, ureoplasma and trichomonas.
The main symptom of urethritis is painful bladder emptying.
Apart from pain, urethritis patients may also exhibit the following symptoms:
- Frequent urination
- Difficulty starting to urinate
- Pain during sexual intercourse
- Urethral discharge
Urethritis diagnosis is typically established with:
- Clinical examination
- Urine culture
- Microscopy of the urethral discharge (if any)
Based on the results of the urinalysis and urethral discharge laboratory test, the patient is given antibiotics to cover the whole range of the microorganisms responsible for urethritis.