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Parsippany Pediatrics

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Urination Pain - Male

Is this your symptom?

  • Discomfort (pain, burning, or stinging) when passing urine
  • May include urgency (can't wait) and frequency (passing small amounts) of urination

Some Basics...

  • Pain when passing urine can be felt in the opening where urine leaves the body or in the genital area.
  • It is never normal. All men who have pain when passing urine should be seen by a doctor.
  • It may be caused by an infection or other problem. Testing is needed.


  • Sexually Transmitted Infection (STI): these can also cause pain when passing urine. Most men with an STI will have a discharge from the penis. It will be clear-white or yellow in color. The two main STIs that can cause this are gonorrhea and chlamydia.
  • Urinary Tract Infection (UTI): these are the most common cause of pain when passing urine. They include bladder infections and prostatitis.
  • In younger men, it is more likely that an STI is causing their pain. In older men, a bladder or prostate infection is more likely.

Other Symptoms

Men with pain when passing urine may also have other symptoms. These may be:

  • Urinate more or less than normal
  • Itch, swollen, or tender genital area
  • Pain with sex
  • Fevers
  • Blood in the urine or semen

Pain Scale

  • None: no pain. Pain score is 0 on a scale of 0 to 10.
  • Mild: the pain does not keep you from work, school, or other normal activities. Pain score is 1-3 on a scale of 0 to 10.
  • Moderate: the pain keeps you from working or going to school. It wakes you up from sleep. Pain score is 4-7 on a scale of 0 to 10.
  • Severe: the pain is very bad. It may be worse than any pain you have had before. It keeps you from doing any normal activities. Pain score is 8-10 on a scale of 0 to 10.

When to Call for Urination Pain - Male

Call 911 Now

  • Very weak (can't stand)
  • You think you have a life-threatening emergency

Call Doctor or Seek Care Now

  • Severe pain
  • Vomiting
  • Fever over 100.4° F (38.0° C)
  • Shaking chills
  • Side (flank) or back pain
  • Pain or swelling in the scrotum
  • Have diabetes
  • Have a weak immune system (HIV, cancer chemo, long-term steroid use, splenectomy)
  • Are bedridden (nursing home patient, stroke, chronic illness, or recovering from surgery)
  • Had a transplant (liver, heart, lung, kidney)
  • You feel weak or very sick
  • You think you need to be seen, and the problem is urgent

Call Doctor Within 24 Hours

  • Blood in urine (red, pink or tea-colored)
  • Pus (white, yellow) from end of penis
  • All other men with pain or burning when passing urine
  • You think you need to be seen, but the problem is not urgent

Care Advice for Painful Urination

  1. What You Should Know:
    • Pain with passing urine may be caused by an infection or other problem. Testing is needed.
    • There are things you can do at home to help the pain.
    • Here is some care advice that should help.
  2. Fluids: Drink extra fluids. Drink 8-10 glasses of liquids a day. This will water-down your urine and make it less painful to pass.
  3. SITZ Baths Twice a Day:
    • Sit in warm bath water for 20 minutes, 2 times each day. This helps clean and heal the rectal area.
    • If you want, you can add ¼ cup (80 grams) of table salt or baking soda to each tub of water. Stir the water until it dissolves.
    • This is also called a Sitz bath.
  4. Antibiotic Drugs: If you have a urinary tract infection (UTI), you may need antibiotics. STIs may also need to be treated with these drugs. See your doctor if you think you have a UTI or STI.
  5. Call Your Doctor If:
    • You think you need to be seen
    • You get worse

And remember, contact your doctor if you develop any of the 'Call Your Doctor' symptoms.

Disclaimer: this health information is for educational purposes only. You, the reader, assume full responsibility for how you choose to use it.

Last Reviewed: 12/15/2019 1:00:30 AM
Last Updated: 3/14/2019 1:00:29 AM

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