Non-Gonococcal Urethritis (NGU)

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What is non-gonococcal urethritis (NGU)?

Non-gonococcal urethritis (NGU) is an inflammation of the male urethra (the tube that carries urine from the bladder out of the body) with or without urethral discharge. NGU can be caused by a variety of bacteria, including chlamydia but not by gonorrhea. Less common causes are viruses. 

How is it transmitted?

Most bacteria and/or viruses that cause NGU can be transmitted during oral, vaginal and anal sexual contact.

What are the symptoms?

Many people do not experience symptoms. If symptoms occur, they can be:

  • Discharge from the penis
  • Itching, irritation and redness around the tip of the penis
  • Burning with urination

How is NGU treated?

  • NGU is treated and cured with antibiotics.
  • It is important to abstain from any sexual contact during treatment and for 7 days after treatment.
  • Encourage your partner(s) to be tested before any sexual activity.

Possible complications

If untreated, the bacteria causing NGU may lead to epididymitis (an infection of the tubes that store sperm from the testes) and prostatitis (infection of the prostate).

Call the Sexual Health Infoline Ontario at 1-800-668-2437 if you have questions or need help.

For more information on the non-gonococcal urethritis (NGU), visit:

Sexual Health Clinic
179 Clarence St,
Ottawa. ON K1N 5P7

613-234-4641 | TTY: 613-580-9656

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