A urethrocele is a form of pelvic organ prolapse in women in which
the urethra—the tube that carries urine from the bladder to outside of the
body—moves from its natural position and presses against the vaginal wall. This
occurs when tissues and muscles that hold the urethra in place stretch or
A woman can develop a urethrocele if her pelvic muscles become
damaged from pregnancy, labor, childbirth, or a previous pelvic surgery. These
muscles may also weaken with age. In rare cases, a urethrocele can be present at birth
A woman who has a urethrocele may leak urine, especially when she
coughs, laughs, or jumps. This leakage is a condition known as incontinence. A
woman may also have difficulty emptying her bladder, which can lead to a
bladder infection (cystitis).
Many women with this condition do not have symptoms and do not need
treatment. If symptoms occur, exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor muscles,
called Kegel exercises, may help. Kegel exercises involve repeatedly
contracting and releasing the muscles that control urine flow. Sometimes a
woman who has a urethrocele needs surgery.
Sarah Marshall, MD - Family Medicine & Martin J. Gabica, MD - Family Medicine & Femi Olatunbosun, MB, FRCSC - Obstetrics and Gynecology
The Health Encyclopedia contains general health information. Not all treatments or services described are covered benefits for Kaiser Permanente members or offered as services by Kaiser Permanente. For a list of covered benefits, please refer to your Evidence of Coverage or Summary Plan Description. For recommended treatments, please consult with your health care provider.