Have you had sexual intercourse with someone who has, or may have, gonorrhea or chlamydia?
Has there been a recent change in your brand of soap, detergent, or fabric softener?
Have you had surgery or radiation to your urinary or sexual organs?
A urinalysis will be done. A urine culture may be ordered. If you have had a previous bladder or kidney infection, a more detailed history and physical are needed, and extra laboratory studies may be necessary. A pelvic exam and examination of vaginal fluids are necessary if a female has a vaginal discharge. Men who have discharge from the penis will need to have a urethral swab done.
Treatment depends on what is causing the pain.
Louis S. Liou, MD, PhD, Chief of Urology, Cambridge Health Alliance, Visiting Assistant Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.