Approach To The Asymptomatic Patient
A therapeutic challenge arises when a patient has urinalysis findings or culture results that are consistent with UTI, yet does not experience any urinary symptoms. The prevalence of this condition, known as asymptomatic bacteriuria, increases with age.6,7Asymptomatic bacteriuria has been reported in 50% of women in long-term care facilities, and the prevalence in men drastically increases in those older than 60 years.6 Routine screening of asymptomatic patients is not recommended, according to the Infectious Diseases Society of America guidelines.6 The only populations with a proven benefit from urinalysis and culture screening are pregnant patients and patients with a planned transurethral resection of the prostate or other urologic procedure in which mucosal bleeding is expected.6 Treatment also may be considered in women with bacteriuria more than 48 hours after catheter removal.6,8 If asymptomatic bacteriuria is identified in a patient from one of these populations, treatment should be initiated as described in TABLE 2.6,8-11 Antibiotic therapy should be started empirically, but it may require modification depending upon the organism identified in the urine culture.
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Causes Of Utis And Bladder Infections In Men
Women are more likely to get urinary tract infections and bladder infections than men because they have a shorter urethra located closer to their rectum.
For them, sexual activity or even wearing a pair of underwear for too long can cause bacteria like E. coli to come in contact with the urinary tract.
Men can get UTIs too, but in their case, its usually due to genetics, prostate changes with age, or an abnormal immune response. STDs such as chlamydia are another frequent cause of UTIs in men.
Can Utis Be Prevented
A few things can help prevent UTIs. After peeing, girls should wipe from front to back with toilet paper. After BMs, wipe from front to back to avoid spreading bacteria from the rectal area to the urethra.
Also, go to the bathroom when needed and don’t hold the pee in. Pee that stays in the bladder gives bacteria a good place to grow.
Keep the genital area clean and dry. Girls should change their tampons and pads regularly during their periods. Bubble baths can irritate the vaginal area, so girls should take showers or plain baths. Avoid long exposure to moisture in the genital area by not wearing nylon underwear or wet swimsuits. Wearing underwear with cotton crotches is also helpful. Skip using feminine hygiene sprays or douches, as these can irritate the urethra.
If you are sexually active, go to the bathroom both before and within 15 minutes after sex. After sex, gently wash the genital area to remove any bacteria. Avoid sexual positions that irritate or hurt the urethra or bladder. Couples who use lubrication during sex should use a water-soluble lubricant such as K-Y Jelly.
Finally, drinking lots of water each day keeps the bladder active and bacteria-free.
UTIs are uncomfortable and often painful, but they’re common and easily treated. The sooner you contact your doctor, the sooner you’ll be able to get rid of the problem.
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What Does A Uti Feel Like
Generally, UTIs feel like a sharp burning sensation while urinating. Oftentimes, the burning is from the acidic urine irritating the lining of the bladder and urethra, urologist Lisa Hawes, MD, told Readers Digest. The bacteria damages the lining of the bladder and urethra and then the acidic urine acts like alcohol over a cut, causing the burn. You may also experience itching and a constant feeling of needing to urinate. If you have a UTI, back pain might also be something you notice. Back pain is one of the common symptoms of a bladder infection, which is a type of UTI.
But is it possible to have a UTI without Symptoms? Could you be sick and not even know it? The scary answer is yes.
Bladder Infection Vs Kidney Infection
The main difference between a bladder infection and a kidney infection is when bacteria have built up and infected the urinary tract system. Although most kidney infections result from untreated bladder infections that migrate to the kidneys, a kidney infection can occur in other ways.
Overall, bladder infections are more common than kidney infections and considered less complicated, especially since kidney infections can lead to serious illness if infections spread through the bloodstream.
A critical difference between bladder infection and kidney infection symptoms is the increased likelihood of illness associated with the infection migrating to the kidneys. The signs and symptoms of a bladder infection that can remain the same even after the infection spreads to the kidneys include:
- A fever remaining under 101 degrees Fahrenheit
- Pain and pressure in the pelvis
- Painful or burning urination
- Dark and cloudy urine that may appear red from blood
- Bad-smelling urine
- Pain in the abdomen
Additional signs and symptoms that indicate an infection has spread to the kidneys include nausea, vomiting, chills, shaking, a fever exceeding 101 degrees Fahrenheit, and, particularly in the elderly, confusion.
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Check If It’s A Urinary Tract Infection
Symptoms of a urinary tract infection may include:
- pain or a burning sensation when peeing
- needing to pee more often than usual during the night
- pee that looks cloudy, dark or has a strong smell
- needing to pee suddenly or more urgently than usual
- needing to pee more often than usual
- lower tummy pain or pain in your back, just under the ribs
- a high temperature, or feeling hot and shivery
- a very low temperature below 36C
A Uti That The Test Isnt Detecting
One possibility is that you really do have a UTI thats flying under the radar. One 2017 study in Clinical Microbiology and Infectionfound that one in five women with UTI symptoms had negative results on the standard tests, but almost all these women had UTIs according to the more sensitive quantitative polymerase chain reaction test.
Standard urine cultures test for specific types of bacteria, but many women will have infections that are not able to be grown in these cultures, Rice says. Another possible reason for a false negative test is that often, the test requires a certain number of bacteria to be grown in culture. For instance, if someone has just urinated prior to leaving a sample and there is not a sufficient quantity of urine built up in the next voided sample, it is possible for a standard urine culture to report negative findings. A false negative can also occur if youve already taken antibiotics, so make sure not to do that.
If you think you might have a UTI thats not being detected, your doctor may be able to do a PCR laboratory test, Rice says. Dr. Jennifer Linehan, M.D, urologist and associate professor of urology and urologic oncology at the John Wayne Cancer Institute at Providence Saint Johnâs Health Center in Santa Monica, tells Bustle that another type of test called Next-Generation Sequencing is even more accurate.
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When Should I See My Doctor
If you have any symptoms associated with a UTI or a pre-existing health condition, dont delay visiting your doctor for treatment.
UTIs can be more dangerous if youre pregnant, due to an increased risk of kidney involvement. See your doctor if you are pregnant and you think you have a UTI, even if your symptoms are mild.
Children with UTI symptoms should see a doctor, to check for a more serious underlying condition.
Bladder infections may spread to your kidneys . This is a serious infection and needs immediate treatment with antibiotics. Signs and symptoms of kidney infection include fever, back pain, diarrhoea and vomiting. If you have these symptoms, it is important to see your doctor.
Will A Uti Go Away On Its Own
Some UTIs can go away on their own. A 2022 article states that some uncomplicated UTIs can resolve spontaneously without treatment, but that some people need to see a doctor to relieve their symptoms.
A person should always see a doctor if they develop symptoms of a UTI as they can progress into a kidney infection.
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Signs And Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infections
UTI symptoms can vary, and it’s possible for someone who has a urinary tract infection to experience no symptoms. But for many people, UTI symptoms are uncomfortable and painful. Besides a strong, persistent urge to urinate, common symptoms include:
When a urinary tract infection moves to the kidneys, symptoms such as fever, shaking, chills, and pain in the upper back, side, or groin may occur.
Children And Urinary Tract Infections
Symptoms in children are different from symptoms in adults. Urinary tract infections are quite common in children. While UTIs in very young children are often associated with an anatomic abnormality, for others the infection is related to introducing bacteria into the urinary tract. UTIs in children generally peak in infancy and then again between ages 2 and 4, coinciding with potty training.
In newborns, signs of urinary tract infection include poor feeding, lethargy, diarrhea, vomiting, mild jaundice, and fever. For babies younger than 2, foul-smelling urine may also be a sign. For older children, the more classic UTI signs, such as urgency, incontinence, and pain while urinating occur.
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Can Alcohol Cause Bladder Problems
Because alcohol is a diuretic, it causes the body to produce more urine, while also making a person use the restroom more frequently. The additional effect of alcohol on the bladder is that it irritates it, which can exacerbate symptoms of overactive bladder. In case of incontinence, you should try to eliminate alcohol.
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Causes Of Urinary Tract Infections
Urinary tract infections are usually caused by bacteria from poo entering the urinary tract.
The bacteria enter through the tube that carries pee out of the body .
Women have a shorter urethra than men. This means bacteria are more likely to reach the bladder or kidneys and cause an infection.
Things that increase the risk of bacteria getting into the bladder include:
do not use scented soap
do not hold your pee in if you feel the urge to go
do not rush when going for a pee try to fully empty your bladder
do not wear tight, synthetic underwear, such as nylon
do not drink lots of alcoholic drinks, as they may irritate your bladder
do not have lots of sugary food or drinks, as they may encourage bacteria to grow
do not use condoms or a diaphragm or cap with spermicidal lube on them try non-spermicidal lube or a different type of contraception
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Urinary Tract Infections In Babies And Young Children
Babies and children are at risk of UTIs. These infections always need to be investigated as they may indicate a serious underlying condition, such as urinary reflux. Reflux is caused by a bladder valve problem allowing urine to flow back into the kidneys from the bladder. Reflux can cause the urine to stay inside the body increasing the risk of infection. It may lead to kidney scarring, which in turn leads to high blood pressure and sometimes kidney problems.
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Uti Treatment: How To Treat A Uti
As soon as you notice a problem in your urinary tract, you should start an immediate course of action for a UTI treatment.
Some will say that antibiotics are the best approach, but many patients have found this ineffective and instead, will opt for natural treatments.
It is important to remember that there are benefits to each of these treatments.
The first kind of treatment for a UTI is taking antibiotics.
Usually, this is recommended as soon as the urine sample is collected, and immediately before surgery.
Although the antibiotics will clear up most of the bacteria that causes the infection.
They will often also reduce the level of enzymes that help to digest protein.
Another way to approach this problem is to use natural remedies.
Taking supplements rich in iron, magnesium, vitamin C, and other vitamins can help to strengthen the immune system.
And also help the body to digest protein more easily.
These kinds of supplements will also help to restore the normal balance.
Vitamin C is often a big help in the treatment of a UTI.
While taking a supplement with vitamin C may not be a quick fix.
It can certainly give some relief from the pain and discomfort that are often associated with this infection.
If the infection has progressed to a more serious stage, an anti-inflammatory drug may be prescribed by your doctor.
As soon as you start to notice any symptoms associated with a UTI, it is best to try and understand how to treat a UTI naturally.
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How Is Urinary Tract Infection Diagnosed
In order to ensure a clean urine sample, a physician will likely have you clean your genital area with a special wipe beforehand, and ask that you do a midstream catch of the urine.
If a UTI is diagnosed, youll be treated with antibiotics. Its important to note that false negative results do occur and that almost all women who experience typical UTI symptoms and a negative urine culture actually do have a UTI. 30209-4/fulltext” rel=”nofollow”> 11)
If youve had a prior UTI, your healthcare provider will look at prior cultures to see which bacteria were found, if any, and which antibiotics were used this often guides therapy in recurrent UTIs.
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
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What Is The Urinary Tract
The urinary tract makes and stores urine, one of the body’s liquid waste products. The urinary tract includes the following parts:
- Kidneys: These small organs are located on back of your body, just above the hips. They are the filters of your body removing waste and water from your blood. This waste becomes urine.
- Ureters: The ureters are thin tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to your bladder.
- Bladder: A sac-like container, the bladder stores your urine before it leaves the body.
- Urethra: This tube carries the urine from your bladder to the outside of the body.
Prevention Of Urinary Tract Infection
There are several steps you can take to reduce your risk of getting a UTI:
- Drink plenty of water and other liquids to help flush out bacteria.
- Urinate frequently, or about every two to three hours.
- For women: Wipe from front to back after urinating or having a bowel movement.
- Urinate before and soon after having sexual intercourse.
- Avoid synthetic underwear, tight pants, and lingering in wet gym clothes or a bathing suit. Though none of this can cause a UTI, these habits can increase the spread of bacteria.
- Avoid vaginal deodorants, douches, powders, and other potentially irritating feminine products.
- Use a method of birth control other than a diaphragm, spermicide, or unlubricated condoms.
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How Are Urinary Tract Infections Diagnosed
Your doctor will use the following tests to diagnose a urinary tract infection:
- Urinalysis: This test will examine the urine for red blood cells, white blood cells and bacteria. The number of white and red blood cells found in your urine can actually indicate an infection.
- Urine culture: A urine culture is used to determine the type of bacteria in your urine. This is an important test because it helps determine the appropriate treatment.
If your infection does not respond to treatment or if you keep getting infections over and over again, your doctor may use the following tests to examine your urinary tract for disease or injury:
- Ultrasound: In this test, sound waves create an image of the internal organs. This test is done on top of your skin, is painless and doesnt typically need any preparation.
- Cystoscopy: This test uses a special instrument fitted with a lens and a light source to see inside the bladder from the urethra.
- CT scan: Another imaging test, a CT scan is a type of X-ray that takes cross sections of the body . This test is much more precise than typical X-rays.
Bladder Infections Vs Other Utis
It is possible to have a more serious type of urinary tract infection that affects your upper urinary tract, a.ka. your kidneys. This typically happens as a result of an untreated UTI in your bladder.
A kidney infection causes symptoms like fever, nausea or vomiting, and one-sided back pain. It is serious and requires immediate medical intervention to avoid complications like scarring of the kidney.
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Treatment Of Utis In A Dog
Antibiotics are indicated for bacterial UTIs. Prescription food may be required to combat crystals/stones in the urinary tract.
Resistant or recurrent UTIs are a real pain in the neck for the patient, pet parent and doc! Many of these require additional testing before a treatment plan can be reached.
Over-the-county remedies and supplements such as cranberry juice extracts dont seem to do much good. One of the most trusted voices in holistic/naturopathic veterinary medicine, Dr. Susan Wynn, DVM, CVA, CVCH, AHG, says she does not use them.