Doctors and providers who treat this condition


Dysuria [Child, Infection Vs Chemical]

The urethra is the channel that passes urine from the bladder. In a girl, the opening of the urethra is above the vagina. In a boy, it is at the tip of the penis. "Dysuria" is the sensation of pain or burning in the urethra when passing urine.

Dysuria can be caused by anything that irritates or inflames the urethra. The cause for your child's dysuria is not certain. The most common cause of dysuria in young children is chemical irritation. This can be caused by soaps, bubble baths or skin lotions that get inside the urethra. Symptoms will resolve in 1-3 days after the last exposure.

Sometimes dysuria is caused by a bladder infection. This is diagnosed with a urine test. It requires treatment with an antibiotic.

Dysuria may also occur in young girls with inflammation in the outer vaginal area (rash or vaginal infection). Treatment is aimed at the cause of the outer vaginal irritation.

A vaginal infection may occur in a young girl and cause vaginal discharge and dysuria. This is diagnosed with a culture and may require treatment with antibiotics.

Home Care:

  1. Washing the genitals gently with a face cloth and soapy water should not cause a problem. Be careful so that soap does not get inside the urethra.

  2. If you believe bubble bath soap was the cause of urethritis, avoid bubble baths in the future.

Follow Up

with your doctor as advised by our staff. If a culture specimen was taken, call in three days for the result, or as directed.

Get Prompt Medical Attention

if any of the following occur:

  • Symptoms do not go away after 3 days

  • Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) oral or 101.4°F (38.5°C) rectal or higher, or as directed by your healthcare provider

  • Inability to urinate due to pain

  • Increased redness or rash in the genital area

  • Discharge from the penis or vagina


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