A urethral (u-REE-thrul) stricture involves scarring that narrows the tube that carries urine out of your body (urethra). A stricture restricts the flow of urine from the bladder and can cause a variety of medical problems in the urinary tract, including inflammation or infection.
Scar tissue, which can narrow the urethra, can be due to:
- A medical procedure that involves inserting an instrument, such as an endoscope, into the urethra
- Intermittent or long-term use of a tube inserted through the urethra to drain the bladder (catheter)
- Trauma or injury to the urethra or pelvis
- An enlarged prostate or previous surgery to remove or reduce an enlarged prostate gland
- Cancer of the urethra or prostate
- Sexually transmitted infections
- Radiation therapy
Urethral stricture is much more common in males than in females. Often the cause is unknown.
Signs and symptoms of urethral stricture include:
- Decreased urine stream
- Incomplete bladder emptying
- Spraying of the urine stream
- Difficulty, straining or pain when urinating
- Increased urge to urinate or more-frequent urination
- Urinary tract infection
Urethral stricture care at Mayo Clinic
Oct. 18, 2017
- Peterson A. Urethral strictures in men. https://www.uptodate.com/contents/search. Accessed June 14, 2017.
- Male urethral stricture: AUA guideline. American Urological Association. https://www.auanet.org/guidelines/male-urethral-stricture-(2016). Accessed June 14, 2017.
- Tritschler S, et al. Urethral stricture: Etiology, investigation and treatments. Deutsches Ärzteblatt International. 2013;110:220.
- Riggin EA. AllScripts EPSi. Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. April 10, 2017.
- Castle EP (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 28, 2017.