HaroldG55 Asked :
I have been experiencing intense itching while urinating which settles but does not go away completely after I stop urinating. The itching sensation is like inside the penis and no matter how much I rub the area or try to scratch around the penis, nothing relieves it. Sometimes the itching gets quite extreme when I am sitting for long periods and cannot go to the toilet and it suddenly strikes and makes me jump up in my seat.
This has been going on for just over a week but over the past 2 days I noticed smelly mucus in my underwear which I don’t think is semen because it just comes on its own with no sexual activity. My greatest fear is that this is a sexually transmitted disease but I am wondering if there are other causes. I have no skin rash on my penis and there is no pain when I urinate. The itching is quite intense during urination so I can say that it is bordering on burning to some extent. What else could cause this itch?
This question was posted under the What is Dysuria? Causes of Painful Urination, Pain when Urinating article.
Any response by the Health Hype team does not constitute a medical consultation and the advice should be viewed purely as a guide. Always consult with your doctor before making any changes to your current treatment program. The information provided in this article is not an authoritative resource on the subject matter and solely intends to guide the reader based on the questions asked and information provided.
Dr. Chris Answered :
It is likely that the symptoms you are experiencing is due to an infectious cause. A sexually transmitted infection is definitely a consideration in males and since you have raised the concern, you may have some reason as to why you are considering this possibility. If you have unprotected sex and your partner is reporting similar symptoms, then it is in all likelihood a sexually transmitted infection and both of you will need to undergo treatment so as to prevent re-infecting each other.
Based on your symptoms, it is quite likely that you have urethritis due to an infection. Chlamydia and gonorrhea would explain the itching along with the discharge but you should also consider syphilis. The absence of a skin rash does not mean that an infection is not present and even though it is progressing slowly, you should have it investigated by your doctor. There are other causes of an infection that may not be sexually transmitted so further tests may be necessary to help identify the cause. These results can take days which would mean that you will be in discomfort while you wait for it so see your doctor immediately.
There are other non-infectious causes which could account for the itching although the offensive smelling discharge (especially a fishy or rotting odor) is a strong indicator of an infection. Allergic reactions, often caused by latex condoms, can also cause this intense itching. Another possibility is that the urine is concentrated or high in certain compounds like uric acid which can irritate the area and cause itching. If you have been experiencing any dribbling then it is possible that remnants of urine in the urethra is causing the persistent itch and may also raise the possibility of a prostate related disorder.
If you are on any medication, it is important to mention this to your doctor as it could also account for your symptoms. Any progression of your condition, like discolored urine, abdominal pain, frequent urination, incontinence and a fever needs immediate medical attention. Speak to your doctor as soon as possible before this progresses any further or other complications arise. Refer to the article on Urine Problems for more information or urinary symptoms that could guide you further.
Article reviewed by Dr. Greg. Last updated on June 29, 2010