A urethral stricture is a scar of the lining of the urethra, the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. Scar tissue can contract and shorten the length diameter of the urethra, slowing the flow of urine.
What Causes Urethral Strictures?
Most urethral strictures are caused by blunt trauma to the perineum or urethral injury from a previous surgery or procedure. Although rare in countries like the United States, some strictures can be caused by inflammation related to sexually transmitted diseases (STDs).
What Conditions Are Urethral Strictures Associated With?
Because urethral strictures can impede the flow of urine, it can result in additional complications, including:
- Bladder infection/inflammation
- Bladder stones
- Urethral abscess
- Urethral cancer
- Urethral diverticulum (abnormal urethra opening)
- Urethrocutaneous fistula (a hole in the urethra)
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs)
How Are Urethral Strictures Treated?
- Urethral Dilation - A procedure to stretch the sides of the urethra.
- Urethrotomy - A surgical incision of the urethra.
- Urethroplasty - Surgical procedures that corrects narrowing or damage to the urethra. These methods include:
- Excision and Primary Anastomosis (EPA) Urethroplasty
- Graft Urethroplasty
- Penile Flap Urethroplasty
- Staged Urethroplasty