Urethral stricture: Symptoms & Signs, Diagnosis & Tests

Symptoms & Signs

  • Blood in the semen
  • Bloody or dark urine
  • Decreased urine output
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Discharge from the urethra
  • Frequent or urgent urination
  • Inability to urinate (urinary retention)
  • Incontinence
  • Painful urination (dysuria)
  • Pain in the lower abdomen
  • Pelvic pain
  • Slow urine stream (may develop suddenly or gradually)
  • Spraying of urine stream
  • Swelling of the penis

Diagnosis & Tests

A physical examination may show the following:

  • Decreased urinary stream
  • Discharge from the urethra
  • Enlarged (distended) bladder
  • Enlarged or tender lymph nodes in the groin (inguinal) area
  • Enlarged or tender prostate
  • Hardness (induration) on the under surface of the penis
  • Redness or swelling of the penis

Sometimes the exam reveals no abnormalities.

Tests include the following:

  • Cystoscopy
  • Post-void residual (PVR) volume
  • Retrograde urethrogram
  • Tests for chlamydia and gonorrhea
  • Urinalysis
  • Urinary flow rate
  • Urine culture

Pictures & Images

Female urinary tract


Review Date : 9/7/2008
Reviewed By : Linda Vorvick, MD, Seattle Site Coordinator, Lecturer, Pathophysiology, MEDEX Northwest Division of Physician Assistant Studies, University of Washington School of Medicine; and Louis S. Liou, MD, PhD, Assistant Professor of Urology, Department of Surgery, Boston University School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.

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