Corrective treatment is necessary only if your stricture causes problems. You'll need frequent follow-up exams for at least a year after treatment to ensure the stricture doesn't recur and that you remain free of infection.
Treatment options at Mayo Clinic include:
Sept. 04, 2015
- Catheterization. Inserting a small tube (catheter) into your bladder to drain urine is the usual first step for treating urine blockage. Your doctor may also recommend antibiotics targeted to treat an underlying infection, if one is present. Self-catheterization may be an option if you're diagnosed with a short stricture.
- Dilation. In this procedure, your doctor inserts a tiny wire through the urethra and into the bladder. Progressively larger dilators pass over the wire to gradually increase the size of the urethral opening. This outpatient procedure may be an option for recurrent urethral strictures.
- Urethroplasty. Urethroplasty involves surgically removing the narrowed section of your urethra or enlarging it. The procedure may also involve reconstruction of the surrounding tissues. Tissues from other areas of the body, such as your skin or mouth, may be used as a graft during reconstruction. The recurrence of strictures after urethroplasty is low.
- Endoscopic urethrotomy. During this procedure, your doctor inserts a cystoscope — a thin optical device — into your urethra. Instruments inserted through the cystoscope into the urethra remove the stricture or vaporize it with a laser. This surgical procedure offers faster recovery, minimal scarring and less risk of infection, although recurrence is possible.
- Implanted stent or permanent catheter. If you have a severe stricture and choose not to have surgery, you may opt for a permanent artificial tube (stent) to keep the urethra open, or a permanent catheter to drain the bladder. However, these procedures have several disadvantages, including risk of bladder irritation, discomfort and urinary tract infections. They also require close monitoring. Urethral stents are often a measure of last resort and are rarely used.
- Peterson A. Treatment of urethral stricture disease. http://www.uptodate.com/home. Accessed July 29, 2015.
- AskMayoExpert. Urethral stricture disease. Rochester, Minn.: Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research; 2014.
- Urinary retention. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-topics/urologic-disease/urinary-retention/Pages/facts.aspx. Accessed July 30, 2015.
- Wein AJ, et al., eds. Surgery of the penis and urethra. In: Campbell-Walsh Urology. 10th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.clinicalkey.com. Accessed July 30, 2015.
- Wolter CE (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, Ariz. Aug. 10, 2015.
- Cook AJ. Decision Support System. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 22, 2015.
- Castle EP (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Scottsdale, Ariz. Aug. 17, 2015.