The urethra is a thin tube responsible for passing urine. It also plays a part in ejaculation in males. A scar, swelling, or infection can narrow this tube, restricting the flow of urine outside your body. This reduced or blocked urine flow is called urethral stricture. This can further lead to many serious urology problems. People with stricture experience pain and difficulty passing urine. It can develop gradually or immediately. If left unaddressed, the condition might worsen to a point that you will need urethral stricture surgery in Mumbai.
Causes of Urethral Stricture
Males have a larger urethra, which means the urine travels a longer distance. The large size also increases the risk of stricture in men. That’s one of the reasons why men are more susceptible to urethral stricture than females. Here are a few common causes of this stricture in adults:
- Prostate surgery
- A history of kidney stones
- Injury to the scrotum
- Infection in the urethra
- Inflammation due to the use of surgical tools
People with a history of catheter insertion into the urethra are also at a higher risk of stricture. Some people notice the symptoms of a stricture immediately after sustaining an injury to their perineum.
Symptoms and Diagnosis
Narrowed tubes or a complete blockage in the urethra will cause discomfort and reduce your urine flow. The stricture produces the following symptoms:
- Difficulty in urinating
- Extreme pain and discomfort when urinating
- Urinary tract infection
- Blood in urine
- Abdominal pain
- Urine leakage
If the urethra gets blocked completely, no amount of urine will pass from your bladder to the penis through the urethra. It is a medical emergency. Failure to pass urine out of your body can also result in renal failure. Treatment is required — whether you have a slightly narrowed urethra or a complete blockage. Since the urethra is located near the prostate, it can cause inflammation in your prostate and might lead to other urinary tract infections.
The non-invasive procedures can detect problems in your bladder, but can’t identify a stricture precisely. The doctor might order an ultrasound after urination to identify the amount of urine left in the bladder. They might also use a collection device to check the urine flow. A slow stream indicates a weak bladder or a possible blockage in the urethra. If the doctor suspects a stricture, they will prescribe cystoscopy, a minimally-invasive procedure that allows the doctor to see inside the urethra.
Treatment for Urethral Stricture
Leaving the urethral stricture unaddressed for long can result in kidney problems, enlarged bladder, and a set of other urinary tract infections. Dilation is the most popular treatment for urethral stricture. It is performed under local anesthesia. In dilation, the doctor inserts a catheter into the urethra to stretch the tissues.
The downside, however, is that it isn’t a permanent solution. The urethra might go back to its original position, restricting the flow of urine. Visit the urethroplasty surgeon in Thane to discuss the appropriate treatment plan. You can also consider reconstructive surgery for permanent relief.