Urethral stricture is an uncommon condition which results in blockage of the urethra or “peeing tube”. Stricture formation results in a narrow circular ring of scar which restricts the flow of urine.
Most men will experience obstructive symptoms such as slow stream, frequent urination, feelings of incomplete emptying, recurrent infections, and straining to void. In severe cases, urinary retention may prevent individuals from urinating and may require emergency intervention. In severely injured patients, blood in the urine may also be seen.
The cause for the majority of urethral strictures is unknown. The most common cause results from trauma of being struck in the area between the legs known as the perineum. Other causes include: inflammatory diseases, i.e. lichen sclerosis (LS) and balanitis xerotica obliterans (BXO); infections, i.e.sexually transmitted disease; congenital abnormalities; instrumentation, i.e. surgery, catheter placement, or pelvic fracture.
Patient evaluation starts with a thorough history and physical. The majority of patients will require a retrograde urethrogram (RUG). This is an outpatient x-ray test which shows the location, density, and length of the urethral stricture and is required for planning a repair. Other additional tests can include insertion of a camera into the bladder called cystoscopy.
The treatment for urethral stricture is customized to fit each individual patient. The Kansas University Department of Urology is a unique in that it has multiple fellowship trained surgeons specializing in urethroplasty surgery including Drs. Joshua Broghammer, Priya Padmanabahn, and J Brantley Thrasher. Most of urethroplasties are performed with an overnight stay in the hospital. The types of treatments offered are below:
For an evaluation or treatment of urethral stricture disease please contact the Kansas University Medical Center Department of Urology to schedule an appointment.