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Urethral Strictures

What Are Urethral Strictures?

Both men and women have a urethra, a thin tube through which urine is passed out of the body. In men, ejaculation occurs through the urethra as well. Urethral strictures are a painful condition in which scar tissue causes narrowing in the urethra, which slows or blocks the flow of urine out of the body.

Scarring in the urethra can be caused by an infection, an injury or swelling. Men are more likely than women to develop a urethral stricture because their urethras are longer. The most common causes of urethral strictures are:

  • Infection – This includes infections from a sexually transmitted disease.

  • Prior surgery – Sometimes surgical tools can inadvertently damage the urethra.

  • Trauma – Impact from a car accident or a fall can damage the urethra.

In some cases, the cause of urethral strictures is unknown.


The symptoms of urethral strictures can include:

Severe, long-lasting blockages can cause kidney damage.

Treatment Options

Almost everyone with this condition will need some sort of intervention to prevent long-term health problems. Treatment for urethral strictures depends on the extent of the blockage and how much scar tissue is present in the urethra. Treatment options include:

  • Dilation – Gradually stretching the stricture to enlarge the area

  • Open surgery – Removing the scar tissue and reconstructing the urethra

  • Robotic surgery – Using robotic-assisted technology to perform a minimally invasive procedure

  • Urethrotomy – A minimally invasive procedure using a laser or knife to cut the stricture

There are currently no medications to treat urethral strictures.

Ready for an Appointment?

If you're experiencing signs or symptoms of urethral strictures, schedule an appointment or call 800-TEMPLE-MED (800-836-7536) today.

Learn more about our doctors and care team who diagnose and treat urethral strictures.