What Is Ureaplasma Parvum?
Ureaplasma parvum is a type of urethritis. It is caused by the bacteria urethrocytosis (UR). UR is a common bacterium found in the human body. Most people are infected with it at some point during their life time. However, there are cases where infection occurs without any signs or symptoms. These infections are called “latent” because they do not cause any symptoms until they become active.
In most cases, these latent infections will go away on their own after a few months. But sometimes the infection becomes active and causes inflammation of various organs like the kidneys, heart, lungs, liver and skin.
When this happens it is known as urethritis (from Greek meaning inflammation).
The bacteria that cause urethritis are called ureters. They are located in the bladder and urethra.
There are two types of ureter: hollow and solid. Hollow ones contain one chamber which contains fluid while solid ones have multiple chambers each containing different kinds of fluids. Ureaplasma parvum is a type of infection caused by the hollow ureters.
How Does Ureaplasma Parvum Affect My Body?
The most common way to get urethritis is through unprotected sexual contact. This is because Ureaplasma parvum are transmitted through bodily secretions such as saliva, tears, and vaginal fluid. It can also be passed from an infected mother to a child during childbirth.
Men and women who have multiple sexual partners are at higher risk of infection. You may not even know that you have an infection because most people do not experience symptoms.
In some cases the symptoms are so mild that they are easily mistaken for another condition such as a vaginal or urinary tract infection.
Urethritis can also be passed from one person to another through other forms of close contact such as:
Sharing Simple Touching (i.e.
Coughing and Sneezing (i.e.
flu viruses or the common cold)
Mother to Child (i.e.
What Are the Symptoms of Urethritis?
The most common symptom is a discharge coming from the urethra (pee pee hole). The color of the discharge can range from a clear white to a yellow or even greenish-yellow. In women, the infection can cause vaginal itching or irritation. Some women might experience severe pain during sexual contact. Most people will have difficulty passing urine and feel like they constantly need to go even if nothing comes out.
People who have weakened immune systems are at higher risk for developing serious complications. These can include:
Inflammation of the kidneys (i.e.
Inflammation of the heart (i.e.
Pulmonary infarction (i.e.
severe lung infection)
In some very rare cases, the infection will spread through the blood stream to other organs such as the liver and brain. If this happens, it can be life-threatening.
How Is Urethritis Diagnosed and Treated?
The only way to confirm a urethritis infection is to get a culture (swab) or urine test done on your infected area. It is important to mention that testing methods for Ureaplasma parvum are not as accurate as other forms of testing. This is why it is important to get a second test done by a different health care professional if the first one comes back negative.
Treatments usually involve antibiotics such as:
Fosfomycin or Dapsone
Azithromycin or Amoxicillin
Trimethoprim/Sulfamethoxazole or Tetracycline (if you are pregnant)
Most people will feel better within a week of starting the correct treatment. It is best to avoid sexual contact and intimate activity while being treated and for at least two weeks after you finish treatment.
How Can Urethritis Be Prevented?
Urethritis cannot be prevented through vaccines. It is however very important to practice safe sexual contact and not engage in intimate activity if you:
Have multiple sexual partners
Use drugs that can weaken your immune system such as heroin or cocaine
Are HIV positive
Are suffering from another STD or HIV infection
Know your partner(s) sexual history and make sure you are both tested before engaging in intimate activity.
Keeping your immune system healthy will also help you fight off potential infections. This means getting plenty of rest, eating nutritious foods, reducing stress in your life and exercising on a regular basis.
It is also important to use latex condoms during sexual contact with new partners or when your partner(s) have(have) symptoms of an infection.
What If I Think I Have Urethritis?
If you think you are experiencing the symptoms of urethritis, it is very important to contact your health care provider as soon as possible. They will be able to correctly diagnose your condition and provide you with the proper treatment options. In the meantime, you can take steps to reduce your risk of spreading the infection such as:
Practice safe sexual contact (i.e.
using latex condoms)
Avoid intimate contact if you have an infection or open wound on your genitals
Wash your hands after using the restroom
At Home Remedies For Urethritis:
There are a few simple home remedies that can help alleviate the symptoms of urethritis. These include:
Drinking plenty of water to help flush out your urinary tract
Wearing loose fitting clothing
Taking a hot bath or shower and gently cleaning the infected area
Applying a soothing ointment to the painful areas (one example is Albolene)
What Is The Urethritis Survival Guide?
The Urethritis Survival Guide is a website dedicated to providing helpful advice and tips on how to live with and manage the symptoms of urethritis. Topics range from home remedies, tips for intimacy, disease statistics, STD information and much more. We also have a blog section where you can share your story or read other people’s. Our goal is to help people gain a better understanding of their condition and improve their outlook on life.
Join our fight against urethritis!
Urethritis Support Group (Find a meeting location near you)
NHS Direct (United Kingdom) Information on urethritis
Urethritis Foundation (United States) Information on urethritis
Terms & Definitions
Cervicitis – Inflammation of the cervix.
Chlamydia – A bacterial infection that can damage the male or female reproductive system. It is been know to cause Infertility in both sexes and can increase the risk of miscarriage and premature birth during pregnancy.
Infection – The invasion of a disease causing microorganism into the body.
STD – Short for sexually transmitted disease. A disease that is primarily transmitted by sexual contact.
Urethritis – Inflammation of the urethra. The urinary tract opening located near the tip of the male genitalia.
This is the passageway where the urine leaves the body.
Urethra – The tube that allows urine to pass from the bladder to the tip of the male genitals allowing for urination.
Sources & references used in this article:
Ureaplasmas and human disease by WM O’leary – Critical reviews in microbiology, 1990 – Taylor & Francis
Bronchopulmonary Dysplasia and Ureaplasma: What Do We Know So Far? by N De La Haye, MC Hütten, S Kunzmann… – Neonatal …, 2017 – neo-med.org
Comparative genome analysis of 19 Ureaplasma urealyticum and Ureaplasma parvumstrains by V Paralanov, J Lu, LB Duffy, DM Crabb, S Shrivastava… – BMC microbiology, 2012 – Springer
Prevalence of Trichomonas vaginalis, Mycoplasma genitalium and Ureaplasma urealyticum in men with urethritis attending an urban sexual health clinic by N Khatib, C Bradbury, V Chalker… – … journal of STD & …, 2015 – journals.sagepub.com
Ureaplasma urealyticum chorioamnionitis by CF Maher, MV Haran, DJ Farrell… – Australian and New …, 1994 – Wiley Online Library
Mycoplasmas and ureaplasmas in infertility and abortion by E Wallach, J Friberg – Fertility and sterility, 1980 – Elsevier
Erythromycin for the prevention of chronic lung disease in intubated preterm infants at risk for, or colonized or infected with Ureaplasma urealyticum by CG Mabanta, GS Pryhuber… – Cochrane Database …, 2003 – cochranelibrary.com