What is Urethral Syndrome?

Urethral syndrome is an experience of pain in the urethra, of unknown cause when no signs of infection can be detected. It is also called non-specific urethritis (NSU), recurrent cystitis and chronic cystitis.

It needs to be diagnosed by a physician or urologist who will first test the urine for infection.

My own personal experience with this disorder is a burning pain that comes and goes for no apparent reason, and can vary from a mild tingling to extreme debilitating pain that makes it difficult to think or stand up.

CAUSE OF THE PAIN

I was diagnosed by a urologist with urethral syndrome thirty-some years ago. Through my own research I have discovered the immediate cause of this pain within myself and how to relieve it.

Through continuous monitoring of my urine pH and pain levels over a two month period and regular monitoring for an additional year, I discovered that acidic urine (pH of 4 to 6) is associated with burning pain in the urethra (urethral syndrome or non-specific urethritis). Urine that is neutral (pH of 7) or alkaline (pH greater than 7) is not painful. It is easy to measure your own urine pH with the use of pH test paper.

*Note that it is possible to have acidic urine for a short period of time without experiencing pain. However, if the urine stays acid for any length of time, it becomes painful. As an experiment, we deliberately ‘crashed’ my husband’s urine pH through diet and maintained it at acidic levels. He does not have urethral syndrome. On the ninth day of the acid-forming diet, he experienced burning pain in the urethra.

I encourage anyone experiencing urethral pain with no infection, to measure their urine pH with test paper. For me the relationship is direct and consistent – I only have pain when my urine pH is 6.0 or lower. I NEVER have pain when my urine pH is above 6.5.

If you measure your urine pH every time you pee for a few days, you will know whether acid urine is the cause of your pain. If it is, then you can absolutely eliminate the pain by taking mineral supplements as given below.

UPDATE NOV 1, 2015: Christine, a long-time sufferer of IC/urethral syndrome, has posted a potential cure on the Comments page of this website. In brief, she used a drug called Nystatin which kills candida yeast in the intestines. This gave her complete relief. Read her comment HERE .

I tried Nystatin myself.  I took Nystatin oral, 100000 U/ML PMS – 1 teaspoon (5 ml) three times daily for 21 days. From that I got a 100% cure, with no side effects at all. Nystatin is also available in pill form but I do not know the dosage. I continued to have symptoms occasionally while taking the Nystatin, even after 2 weeks of taking it, so I thought it was not working, but I continued taking it until the end, and never had a symptom again. Even when my urine is acid, I have no pain.

Based on this experience, I believe it is likely that urethral syndrome is caused by a yeast or fungal infection in the urethra, and that acid urine causes pain to the inflamed tissue in the same way that putting lemon juice on cut or scraped skin causes pain.

Therefore I recommend the use of an anti-fungal drug, such as Nystatin, for an extended period of time to cure the underlying cause of burning pain in the urethra. The minerals and alkaline diet can be used to control the pain but it is not a cure.

HOW TO STOP THE PAIN

UPDATE : MY URETHRAL SYNDROME HAS BEEN CURED. In November 2015, Christine, a long-time sufferer of IC/urethral syndrome, posted a potential cure on the Comments page of this website. In brief, she used a drug called Nystatin which kills candida yeast in the intestines. This gave her complete relief. Read her comment HERE .

Based on her experience, I tried Nystatin myself in December 2015.  I took Nystatin oral, 100000 U/ML PMS – 1 teaspoon (5 ml) three times daily for 21 days. From that I got a 100% cure, with no side effects at all. Nystatin is also available in pill form but I do not know the dosage. I continued to have symptoms occasionally while taking the Nystatin, even after 2 weeks of taking it, so I thought it was not working, but I continued taking it until the end, and never had a symptom again. Even when my urine is acid, I have no pain.

Based on this experience, I believe it is likely that urethral syndrome is caused by a yeast or fungal infection in the urethra, and that acid urine causes pain to the inflamed tissue in the same way that putting lemon juice on cut or scraped skin causes pain.

Therefore I recommend the use of an anti-fungal drug, such as Nystatin, for an extended period of time to cure the underlying cause of burning pain in the urethra. The minerals and alkaline diet can be used to control the pain but it is not a cure.

Before I was cured with Nystatin, I found it relatively easy to control the pain of urethral syndrome/non-specific urethritis primarily through mineral supplements and secondarily through diet. Taking mineral supplements of calcium (carbonate or citrate), magnesium (citrate, malate or oxide), potassium (bicarbonate or citrate or gluconate) and sodium bicarbonate (baking soda) makes the urine more alkaline and eliminates the pain of urethral syndrome.

Each day I took a total of:

* 1000 mg of calcium carbonate or calcium citrate

* 500 mg of magnesium oxide or magnesium malate or magnesium citrate

* 1000 mg of potassium bicarbonate or potassium citrate

These mineral supplements are inexpensive and are widely available at pharmacies and health food stores. The above amounts are all well within the recommended daily allowances for adults. For more information on recommended daily intakes from the USDA click here.

I split this daily dose up and take a portion with each meal (breakfast, lunch and supper). Using this regime I WAS PAIN-FREE for about 8 years.

If I was experiencing symptoms, in addition to the above I took:

* 2800 mg of sodium bicarbonate (1/2 teaspoon of baking soda dissolved in water and drink it)

Note that if you have been experiencing this pain for a while you may have considerable inflammation that could take some time to settle down; perhaps a few days, although you should experience significant pain relief within a couple of hours. My experience was that my pain was usually gone within 2 hours of taking baking soda/mineral supplements, however after a strong pain it may take longer (24 – 48 hours) to get the urine out of the acid range.

**IMPORTANT: Potassium must NOT be taken in high doses because this could affect the functioning of the heart even in a healthy person. If you have a heart condition, do not take ANY potassium supplement without first consulting your physician.

**IMPORTANT: Do not take baking soda if a doctor has put you on a sodium-restricted diet.

**IMPORTANT: Potassium chloride has no beneficial effect on urine pH because the chloride component is acid-forming. So the chloride cancels out the alkalinizing effect of the potassium. The same is true for sodium chloride (table salt).

DIET

FOODS THAT REDUCE THE PAIN OF URETHRAL SYNDROME:

Foods that are alkalinizing to the body (and urine) include most fruits and vegetables, especially potatoes (white and sweet), spinach, bananas, and raisins.

FOODS THAT INCREASE THE PAIN OF URETHRAL SYNDROME:

The acid-forming substances in food include all proteins and the minerals chloride and phosphorous. Acid-forming foods include meats, grains, beans and cheese due to their high protein content.

FOODS THAT ARE NEUTRAL:

Some foods do not significantly impact the acid-alkaline balance in the body. Sugar and oils and fats are neutral and milk, ice cream, yogurt and table salt are very close to neutral.

I cannot control my symptoms through food alone – I tried. I must take mineral supplements. My diet is not overly strict and with a small effort I am pain-free. I eat potatoes instead of pasta or rice, take smaller portions of protein foods, and snack on raisins, fruit and raw carrots – otherwise I eat whatever I want.

For a more complete listing of foods, click on the FOOD CHARTS link at the top of this page.