Urinary Tract Infection Treatment
If you are a healthy adult man or a woman who is not pregnant, a few days of antibiotic pills will usually cure your urinary tract infection. If you are pregnant, your doctor will prescribe a medicine that is safe for you and the baby. Usually, symptoms of the infection go away 1 to 2 days after you start taking the medicine. Its important that you follow your doctors instructions for taking the medicine, even if you start to feel better. Skipping pills could make the treatment less effective.
Your doctor may also suggest a medicine to numb your urinary tract and make you feel better while the antibiotic starts to work. The medicine makes your urine turn bright orange, so dont be alarmed by the color when you urinate.
When To See A Healthcare Provider
If you develop signs of a kidney infection, including flank pain, nausea, or vomiting, you need to see a healthcare provider immediately.
If you are pregnant, you should never take a chance with UTIs, especially if you have diabetes, HIV, or have had previous infections. Even mild symptoms should be looked at, treated, and monitored to ensure that the infection is fully cleared.
Without exception, any symptoms of suggestive of sepsis should be treated as a medical emergency. This is especially true in babies or the elderly.
How Are Utis Diagnosed
To diagnose a UTI, health care providers ask questions about what’s going on, do an exam, and take a sample of pee for testing.
How a sample is taken depends on a child’s age. Older kids might simply need to pee into a sterile cup. For younger children in diapers, a catheter is usually preferred. This is when a thin tube is inserted into the urethra up to the bladder to get a “clean” urine sample.
The sample may be used for a urinalysis or a urine culture . Knowing what bacteria are causing the infection can help your doctor choose the best treatment.
Recognizing A Kidney Infection
When you have a UTI that spreads to your kidneys, youll probably have symptoms in your lower urinary tract first. But the following symptoms indicate that your kidneys may also be affected:
Fever and Chills A UTI thats limited to your lower urinary tract usually doesnt cause flu-like symptoms, but when it spreads to your kidneys, your bodys immune system tends to kick into higher gear.
Pain in Your Lower Back or Side Your kidneys are located on each side of your body in the lower part of your torso. A kidney infection can cause pain on one or both sides of your body, or more general pain in your lower back.
Pain caused by a kidney infection can range from mild to severe.
Nausea and Vomiting These symptoms, like fever and chills, indicate an infection thats more severe and advanced than a typical UTI.
Abdominal or Pelvic Pain An infection in your abdominal region, such as in your kidneys, can cause your abdominal muscles to contract, causing pain.
Your pelvic or groin area may also be painful due to muscle contraction.
Cloudy or Smelly Urine While its possible for an infection in your lower urinary tract to cause changes in your urine, if its noticeably cloudy or smells foul, thats an indication your UTI may have progressed to your kidneys.
Cloudy urine may indicate the presence of pus, a thick, white or yellow liquid that can form in areas of infection.
Im Pregnant How Will A Uti Affect My Baby
If you have a UTI and it isnt treated, it may lead to a kidney infection. Kidney infections may cause early labor. Fortunately, asymptomatic bacteriuria and bladder infections are usually found and treated before the kidneys become infected. If your doctor treats a urinary tract infection early and properly, it wont hurt your baby.
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Ok So How Do I Make Sure I Never Get A Uti Or A Kidney Infection
As they say, prevention is the best cure! And there are many things you can do to ensure that youre reducing your risk for an infection, and preventing build up from occurring in the kidneys.
Practice good hygiene. Always wipe from front to back, keep your genital area clean, wash before and after sex. Basically, do your best to keep bacteria from even having a chance of getting into the urinary system in the first place.
Drink lots of water. If youre dehydrated, youre not only increasing your chance of a UTI, but youre also decreasing your urine output, meaning that more minerals have a chance to build up and settle in the urinary tract or kidneys.
Make sure to urinate whenever you feel you have to go. Dont hold it in. This concentrates the urine allowing bacteria to build up and spread.
Alter your diet if you find youre prone to kidney stones. Cut down on certain meats and shellfish and opting instead for more vegetables, fruits and whole grains. Avoid consuming too much sugar. Cut back on sodium, and eat more oxalate-rich foods .
And if you do start experiencing any of the symptoms above, be sure to see a doctor right away. UTIs, kidney infections, and kidney stones can usually be treated fairly easily, but its important to seek medical attention before any complications develop.
Complications Associated With Bladder Infections
If you get chronic urinary tract infections , have symptoms again within 2 weeks of treatment, or dont respond to treatment within 48 hours, you should contact your doctor again for more testing as you may have a more serious health problem, such as a kidney infection.
If left untreated for a long period of time, UTIs can move past the bladder and urethra into the upper urinary system, which includes the kidneys and ureters. When this occurs, a common bladder infection can turn into a more serious kidney disease called pyelonephritis.
Pyelonephritis has the potential to spread to the blood and cause a more severe illness, which is why it is so important that you are treated for kidney infection right away. If diagnosed with a kidney infection, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics and you should start feeling better in about a week.
The bottom line on UTIs is that they are common, easy to diagnose, and respond well to physician recommended antibiotics. Only rarely will you need in-depth testing and examination and you should be back to your normal self in no time.
If you experience any symptoms of a UTI or bladder infection, to set up a phone appointment with a top U.S. doctor today.
What Is The Most Common Cause Of Bladder Infection
According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases , most bladder infections are caused by Escherichia coli . This type of bacteria is naturally present in the large intestines. An infection can occur when bacteria from the stool get onto the skin and enter the urethra.
How Long Does A Uti Last
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If you have a UTI, its best to get it treated right away before any complications develop . Its possible for a UTI to get better on its own, but most of the time, it wont. While home remedies can help ease some of the discomfort, a doctor can prescribe you an antibiotic that is a much quicker and more effective treatment. An antibiotic will start working immediately and, depending on how complicated your UTI is, may clear it up in a matter of days. Be sure to always take your medication how your doctor prescribes.
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When To See A Doctor
If you have signs of a kidney infection, you should see a doctor right away. Again, a kidney infection is seriousit can sometimes lead to a dangerous, life-threatening health condition called , the NIDDK says. Even if your infection doesnt progress to that, a kidney infection can become chronic, i.e., long-lasting, and can cause permanent damage to your kidneys, the NIDDK says. Kaufman recommends heading to your local urgent care facility or emergency room if you have signs of a kidney infection.
When To Call A Doctor
Get medical help at once if it hurts to pee and you also have any of these symptoms:
- Belly or back pain
You should also call your doctor if:
- Symptoms return after youâve finished treatment.
- You also have discharge from your vagina or penis. This may be a sign of a sexually transmitted disease , pelvic inflammatory disease , or other serious infections.
- You have ongoing pain or a hard time peeing. This may also be a sign of an STD, a vaginal infection, a kidney stone, enlargement of the prostate, or a bladder or prostate tumor. Or it could be that the infection is resistant to the antibiotic your doctor prescribed.
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Condom Use During Sex
Non-lubricated latex condoms may increase friction and irritate the skin during sexual intercourse. This may increase the risk of a UTI.
To help prevent friction and skin irritation from condoms, be sure to use enough water-based lubricant during sex.
Avoid using condoms that have been coated with spermicide.
What Causes Urinary Tract Infections
UTIs usually happen because bacteria enter the urethra, then make their way up into the bladder and cause an infection. Girls get UTIs much more often than guys, most likely due to differences in the shape and length of the urethra. Girls have shorter urethras than guys, and the opening lies closer to the anus and the vagina, where bacteria are likely to be.
Bacteria can get into the urethra several ways. During sex, for example, bacteria in the vaginal area may be pushed into the urethra and eventually end up in the bladder, where pee provides a good environment for the bacteria to grow. This is why females who are sexually active often get UTIs.
Bacteria may also get into a girl’s bladder if she wipes from back to front after a bowel movement , which can contaminate the urethral opening. The use of spermicides and diaphragms as contraceptives also may increase the risk of UTIs.
Sexually transmitted diseases may cause UTI-like symptoms, such as pain with peeing. This is due to the inflammation and irritation of the urethra or vagina that’s sometimes associated with chlamydia and other STDs. If untreated, STDs can lead to serious long-term problems, including pelvic inflammatory disease and infertility. Unlike UTIs, STDs are contagious.
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When To Seek Medical Advice
You may find your UTI symptoms are mild and pass within a few days. However, you should see your GP if you find your symptoms very uncomfortable or if they last for more than five days.
Also see your GP if you have a UTI and:
- you develop a high temperature
- your symptoms suddenly get worse
- you are pregnant
- you have diabetes
Types Of Urinary Tract Infection
Urinary tract infections can occur anywhere within the urinary tract, which includes the:
- Urethra, the tube that passes urine out of the body from the bladder. Infection of the urethra is also known as urethritis
- Bladder, the organ that collects and stores urine. Infection of the bladder is also known as cystitis
- Ureters, the tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder
- Kidneys, the organs that filter blood, eliminating waste via the urine. Infection of one or both kidneys is also known as pyelonephritis
The majority of UTIs affect the bladder and/or the urethra. These are known as lower urinary tract infections.
However, the infection can also travel up the urinary tract to reach the kidneys. In rare cases, the ureters may also become infected. These are called upper urinary tract infections. They are less common than lower tract infections and tend to be more severe.
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What Is The Urinary Tract And How Does It Normally Work
The urinary tract is the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra.
The kidneys filter and remove waste and water from the blood to produce urine. The urine travels from the kidneys down 2 narrow tubes called the ureters. The urine is then stored in the bladder.
When your child does a wee, urine flows out of the body through the urethra, a tube at the bottom of the bladder. The opening of the urethra is at the end of the penis in boys and in front of the vagina in girls.
Front view of the urinary tract
Side view of the female urinary tract
Side view of the male urinary tract
What Is A Uti Anyway
A UTI, or urinary tract infection, happens when bacteria enters into any part of your urinary system, which includes the urethra, the bladder, the kidneys or the uterus. If not flushed out of the system, the bacteria can lead to an infection, or a UTI.
If youve ever had a UTI , you probably havent forgotten the symptoms. UTIs are very unpleasant, to say the least, and are often accompanied with one or more of the following:
A burning sensation when urinating
A strong urge to urinate often, usually passing only small amounts of urine at a time.
Cloudy and/or strong smelling urine
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Questions To Ask Your Doctor
- Do I need any tests, such as urinalysis?
- What is the likely cause of my urinary tract infection ?
- Do I need medicine? How should I take it?
- What are the possible side effects of the medicine?
- When should I expect relief from my symptoms?
- What symptoms would indicate that my infection is getting worse? What should I do if I experience these symptoms?
- I get UTIs a lot. What can I do to prevent them?
- Do I need preventive antibiotics? If so, should I be concerned about antibiotic resistance?
- My child gets UTIs a lot. Could an anatomical problem be causing his or her UTIs?
Uncommon Symptoms Of A Urinary Tract Infection You Should Know
About 40% of women develop at least one urinary tract infection in their lifetime. Having one UTI over the span of decades doesnt sound too bad, but not all women are that lucky.
Its estimated that 20-30% of women will have a second UTI within 3-4 months. And for 11% of women, UTIs become an ongoing problem, recurring at least once every year and often more frequently.
UTIs typically cause a specific cluster of symptoms: a strong need to urinate, frequent urination, burning when you urinate, and passing small amounts of urine. Women receive comprehensive care for UTIs at Fred A. Williams, MD, so call the office in Paris, Texas, if you experience any of those symptoms.
Were also available to answer your questions if you develop one or more of these three uncommon symptoms of a UTI.
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Can A Uti Go Undetected In A Urine Test
If the bacteria are not in your sample, they will not be detected. There are other reasons your sample may not contain detectable levels of bacteria, including over-hydration. If your bladder is frequently flushed and your urine is diluted, your sample may not contain enough of anything a urine culture can detect.
The Relationship Between The Flu And Bladder Infections
One thing that many people dont realize is that flu symptoms are often very similar to those of a bladder infection. However, the flu cannot directly cause a bladder infection. There is no proven research that getting the flu will lead to the development of an infection. The only connection between the two is that the flu can weaken your immune system, which can make you more susceptible to a bladder infection under the right circumstances.
The flu is caused by an influenza virus that enters your body through a mucus membrane. It leads to an infection in the throat, nose, and lungs and can spread between individuals through droplets in the air. Flu viruses can also live on objects for up to 48 hours, so transmission from surfaces is possible. Bladder infections, on the other hand, are caused by bacteria. They are two different microorganisms and are in no way tied to one another.
While the flu cannot cause a bladder infection and vice versa, it is possible to suffer from both the flu and a bladder infection simultaneously. As flu season gets closer, make sure that you are familiar with common symptoms of infection. These can include:
- Vomiting and/or diarrhea
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Which Infections Are Worse
NIDDK . A kidney infection is usually caused by a bladder or urethra infection where the bacteria multiply and travel upward toward the kidneys.
Kidney infections can be extremely serious and painful, sometimes leading to hospitalization to receive intravenous antibiotics. If left untreated, kidney infections due to UTIs can cause infections in the bloodstream. This can be life-threatening.