What is urethral diverticulum?
Urethral diverticulum (UD) is a condition where a small bulging "pocket" or outpouching forms next to the urethra, the tube that carries urine from your bladder to outside your body. Because it typically connects to the urethra, this outpouching gets filled with urine during voiding.
What causes urethral diverticulum?
Urethral diverticulum can be associated, but not necessarily, with repeated infections and/or obstruction of the glands that line the urethral wall, known as periurethral glands.
What are the symptoms of urethral diverticulum?
Symptoms vary and may include:
- Urinary incontinence
- Urinary urgency
- Urinary frequency
- Post-void dribbling
- Chronic (recurrent) urinary tract infections
- Blood in the urine
In some cases, patients may not experience any symptoms at all. Others may have symptoms that come and go and even disappear for long periods of time.
How is urethral diverticulum diagnosed?
Diagnosis starts with a detailed medical history and thorough physical exam and may also include cystoscopy and MRI, among other tests.
How is urethral diverticulum treated?
While careful observation and medications may be appropriate in some cases, treatment typically involves surgical excision.