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chronic urethritis??? HELP!! chronic urethritis??? HELP!!

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Unread 10-04-2003, 05:04 PM
chronic urethritis??? HELP!!

I sure hope someone is going to be able to help me because I've searched all over this site, the web, and seen numerous doctors and come up with close to nothing so far over the past 18 months. This summer I was diagnosed with chronic urethritis because my urologist can "milk" a discharge from my urethra. It has been cultured twice and comes back as normal flora. My main symptom is a sensation in the urethra that is very hard to describe but sort of scratchy-sort of burning. Very irritated. I am constantly aware of that part of my body. It does not burn to urinate, but afterwards the sensation in the urethra gets worse for awhile. I've tried antibiotics which haven't done a thing. Pyridium Plus (has an anti-spasmodic and pain reliever as well) helps about 80% of the time. I don't urinate frequently or have any incontinence issues. Sometimes I feel a bloodless sensation like when your foot goes to sleep, but not numb or tingly, on that piece of tissue the urethra meatus is on. When I look down there it is so pale--literally almost white. Exercise, heat, nothing will stimulate blood flow. Most of the time my urethra is wide open. I think it's supposed to be closed but mine is gaping wide about 2-3mm the majority of the time. I've never had a UTI of any kind ever in my life but I don't believe these symptoms are close to what those are which might indicate interstitial cystitis or urethral syndrome. My urologist is now wanting to surgically remove any offending glands (skenes and/or paraurethral) because the only thing he can think of is that they are infected much like acne. It's your body's own bacteria so no infection can be detected in a lab test. (I hope that makes sense.) My worry is, if it really is like acne, I've never heard of removing glands to clear that up! I'm sure my urethral glands do something despite what he says.
I guess I should mention that I had a very hard time getting Lupron out of my system (took close to a year), but my ovaries are functioning very normally and my estrogen levels are great. Over the past year I've tried all sorts of estrogen replacement to see if it would help my urethra any and it didn't.
Also I had a lap adhesion removal 9/5/03 and, although they removed a significant amount of adhesions, he saw nothing abnormal that might indicate a problem with my bladder. But he did also say that the urethra can't be seen from the pelvic cavity.
I've also had 1 dr say it was vestibulitis, then 2 doctors afterwards tell me defnitely not (and I agree with them).
Does anyone have any ideas/suggestions that maybe I haven't thought of? Some days the sensation is enough to make me want to cut that part of my body out! Obviosly I wouldn't do that, but I know many of you can relate to the frustration to physical discomfort that can't be helped or explained.
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Unread 10-04-2003, 08:48 PM
chronic urethritis??? HELP!!

Hi (((Donna))) I'm sorry you're having such a rough time. You mentioned that you've tried several kinds of estrogen. Even if your blood levels of estrogen test as normal, if you're using systemic HRT (patches, pills, injections, sublinguals, transdermal creams) you can still have a deficiency of estrogen in your vaginal and urethral tissues.

Have you tried Premarin vaginal cream? It is about the most effective short term treatment for vaginal and urethral atrophy. Urethral atrophy is sometimes called urethritis and is a result of low estrogen in the urethral tissues.

Symptoms of vaginal and urethral atrophy are vaginal dryness, pain during sex (sometimes spotting too), pain during urination and eventually, urinary incontinence. Getting the estrogen level in those tissues back up can greatly relieve the symptoms. If you haven't tried it yet, it might be worth a try before deciding to go through with additional surgery to fix the problem.

I hope this helps... also if you haven't read it yet, you might take a look at the article on vaginal dryness on the hormone jungle articles page of this site.

Unread 10-04-2003, 11:45 PM
chronic urethritis??? HELP!!

Thanks, and that makes sense. I should have mentioned that over the past 9 months, I've tried Estring, Pramarin, Estrace vaginal cream, and a compounded Estriol vag cream. Nothing has helped. I guess I could get a cell matuization test to see if my symptoms are actually caused by estrogen deficiency, but I just don't think they are. And neither do any of my doctors. The urethral discharge is very suspicious and indicitive of something else they all say. Sometimes my urethra even feels swollen or bruised. This all started after my diagnostic lap 3/2002. But I also started Lupron just a few days later. These symptoms developed 2 weeks after that and have just never gone away. Who knows?

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