How is urethritis diagnosed?

Updated: Dec 12, 2018
  • Author: Martha K Terris, MD, FACS; Chief Editor: Edward David Kim, MD, FACS  more...
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Urethritis can be diagnosed based on the presence of one or more of the following [8] :

  • A mucopurulent or purulent urethral discharge

  • A urethral smear that demonstrates at least five leukocytes per oil immersion field on microscopy

  • A first-voided urine specimen that demonstrates leukocyte esterase on dipstick test or at least 10 white blood cells (WBCs) per high-power field on microscopy

All patients with urethritis should be tested for Neisseria gonorrhoeae and Chlamydia trachomatis.

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