Urethral Stricture (cont.)
Siamak T. Nabili, MD, MPH
Dr. Nabili received his undergraduate degree from the University of California, San Diego (UCSD), majoring in chemistry and biochemistry. He then completed his graduate degree at the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). His graduate training included a specialized fellowship in public health where his research focused on environmental health and health-care delivery and management.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- What is the urethra?
- What is urethral stricture?
- What are the causes of urethral stricture?
- What are the symptoms of urethral stricture?
- What type of doctors treat urethral obstruction?
- How is urethral stricture diagnosed?
- Are there any special tests for diagnosing urethral stricture?
- What is the treatment for urethral stricture?
- What surgical options are available for urethral stricture?
- Can urethral stricture be prevented?
- What is the prognosis for urethral stricture?
- Urethral Stricture At A Glance
- Find a local Urologist in your town
Are there any special tests for diagnosing urethral stricture?
The following are some common imaging and endoscopic tests in evaluating urethral stricture:
- Ultrasound of the urethra
- Retrograde urethrogram
- Anterograde cystourethrogram
Ultrasound of the urethra is one of the radiologic methods in evaluating urethral stricture. An ultrasound probe can placed along the length of the penis (phallus) and determine the size of the stricture, degree of narrowing, and length of the stricture. This is a non-invasive method and usually does not require any special preparation.
Retrograde urethrogram is another radiology test to evaluate urethral strictures. This test basically entails placing a small urinary catheter in the last part of the urethra (closest to the tip of the penis). Approximately 10 cc of an iodine contrast material is slowly injected in the urethra via the catheter. Then, radiographic pictures are taken under fluoroscopy to assess any obstruction or impairment to the flow of the contrast material that can suggest urethral stricture. This test provides useful information about the location, extent, and size of any narrowing in the urethra as well as the shape of any possible abnormalities.
Anterograde cystourethrogram is a similar test but can only be done if there is a suprapubic catheter in place (a urinary catheter placed in the bladder through the skin in the lower abdomen). Iodine contrast is then injected into the bladder via the catheter and its flow out of the urethra is radiographed under fluoroscopy.
Cystourethroscopy is an endoscopic evaluation in which a small camera at the tip of a thin tube is inserted into the urethra for direct visualization of the lumen of the urethra. The tip of the urethral opening is cleansed, and local lubricant and anesthetic gels are applied for comfort. Then the endoscope is inserted into the urethra and bladder. Any anatomical or structural abnormalities will be detected, and a biopsy can be obtained at the same time if necessary.
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