Non Specific Urethritis (NSU)

What is Non Specific Urethritis (NSU)

Non specific urethritis (NSU) is inflammation and possibly discharge from the male urethra (urine outlet tube). NSU is almost always caused through sexual infection, although in rare cases it can be caused by an allergic reaction to soap, washing power or other chemicals. In about 50% of cases NSU is caused by chlamydia, the other 50% of the cases are caused by bacteria like mycoplasma and ureaplasma.

Symptoms of Non Specific Urethritis

Often there are no symptoms, but when there are, they appear about two to four weeks after sexual intercourse. The main symptoms are a watery or white/cloudy discharge from the tip of the penis, which may be more noticeable first thing in the morning. Also burning on passing urine and increased frequency of urination are possible. Even though there may be no symptoms, it is still possible to pass the infection to your partner(s).

Testing for Non Specific Urethritis

Non Specific Urethritis is diagnosed by simple microscopy. A sample will be taken using a swab from the penis or urethra. In about half the cases a chlamydia test is positive. Do not pass urine for a least one hour before attending the clinic to have a test.

At the Sunshine clinic Rapid Tests are available for Non Specific Urethritis, which provide results in under 20 minutes. Appointments can generally be arranged the same day by telephone for testing and treatment.

Treatment of Non Specific Urethritis

Treatment depends on the infecting organism. However, nonspecific urethritis can usually be effectively treated with a course of antibiotics like Azithromycin. It is given in a one off dose of four capsules. It can reoccur in 30% of cases. Recurrent cases can be treated with combination of two antibiotics.

It is important that anyone who has had sexual contact with you since the infection has occurred, is also treated.

You should not have any form of penetrative sex, even with a condom, until you have been give the all clear by the Doctor.

Prevention of Non Specific Urethritis

Non specific urethritis is a sexually transmitted infection. This means that it is passed from one person to another through sexual intercourse or intimate physical contact. The only way to protect yourself from sexually transmitted infections, is to use a barrier method of contraception during sexual contact. The male condom is the most reliable barrier method of contraception.

Complications from Non Specific Urethritis

Serious complications are rare but occasionally inflammation of the testicles and tubes can occur leading to sterility. Very occasionally infection can spread to involve the prostate gland. Reiter’s syndrome is a rare complication involving inflammation of joints and urethra.

I May Have Non Specific Urethritis

If you have any concerns relating to this condition, or any conditions described on this website, please contact the Sunshine Clinic by telephone to arrange an appointment with Dr Sood,


on 0845 505 0552


or use the contact form    Contact

Dr Prabhat Sood

Consultant Physician
Genitourinary and HIV Medicine

24 Hour appointment booking service

0845 505 0552

Weekend Appointments Available

Sunshine Clinic

West Midlands Hospital
Colman Hill
Halesowen
West Midlands
B63 2AH