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Non-Specific Urethritis (NSU)

What is it?

NSU (Non-specific urethritis) occurs only in the penis. It is inflammation of the urethra, the tube that carries urine out of the body.

How is it passed on?

There are many causes of NSU. It can be caused STIs (e.g. Chlamydia) or sensitivity to chemicals such as spermicide, soap or latex. Sometimes it can be caused by bacteria which can be passed through sex, but that we cannot test for. This is why it is important that partners are treated too.

If NSU is not treated it can have long term effects on health, including painful infection in the testicles.

What are the symptoms?

You might experience burning or stinging when you pass urine and/or a discharge coming from your penis.

How do you test for it?

NSU is diagnosed by looking at a sample from the top of the penis under a microscope in clinic.

What is the treatment?

NSU is treated with antibiotics.

If you are treated for NSU, it is important that your partner is also treated before you have sex again, even if they have no symptoms.

Find out how to avoid STIs.