Background: C. trachomatis is the underlying cause of 20?-?50 % of sexually transmitted urethritis cases. Data from the last 10?-?15 years indicate that M. genitalium may be a cause, but the prevalence of M. genitalium in Norwegian patients has not previously been assessed or published.
Material and methods: Male patients at the Olafia Clinic in Oslo were examined for non-gonococcal urethritis. First void urine was collected and tested for presence of C. trachomatis and M. genitalium DNA by polymerase chain reaction (PCR). Presence of C. trachomatis or M. genitalium was correlated with microscopic signs of urethritis, quantified by counting polymorphonuclear leucocytes in urethral smears.
Results: Both C. trachomatis and M.gentialium were found more frequently in patients with microscopic signs of urethritis than in patients without (21.9 % vs 0.7 %, OR = 40, CI = 6?-?295; 8.7 % vs 0.7 %, OR = 14, CI = 1.8?-?102; respectively). The increase in prevalence correlated with the severity of urethritis, as assessed by the number of polymorphonuclear leucocytes present in urethral smears.
Interpretation: Data from Norwegian patients support earlier findings in other European populations, where M. genitalium is defined as a sexually transmitted infection that causes non-gonococcal urethritis in men.