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Whats The Difference Between A Uti And A Bladder Infection

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How Are Utis Treated

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Treatments for UTIs often depend on the severity of the infection. Doctors often divide UTIs into simple and complicated infections.

Bladder infections usually fall into the simple category. Doctors can usually treat them with antibiotics over the course of three to five days. Common antibiotics used to treat bladder infections include trimethoprim, ciprofloxacin, and amoxicillin-clavulanate potassium.

If you have an infection, you should always take all of your antibiotics, even if you feel better. This keeps the infection from coming back.

Complicated UTIs are harder to treat. Kidney infections usually fall into this category. If you have a complicated UTI, you may require IV antibiotics and have to take antibiotics for a week or more.

What Is A Uti

UTI or urinary tract infection can be defined as infections involving the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. The majority of UTIs are isolated attacks but in 10% of the cases, there is a possibility of having recurrent attacks. Of that 10%, 20% is because of relapses and the remaining 80% is because of re-infections. UTIs have been recognized as the commonest cause of .

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

  • Pelvic pain

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What Are The Risk Factors For Getting Bladder Infections And Other Uti Infections

A person is more likely to get a bladder infection if they dont urinate frequently enough. If they hold their urine in, the bacteria can collect in the bladder and lead to infection. Try to go to the bathroom at least every two to three hours to keep this from happening.

Not drinking enough water is another risk factor for bladder infections because your body doesnt move as much urine through the bladder as quickly.

Risk factors for urethritis include having a sexually transmitted infection or from trauma to the urethra, such as due to the insertion of a urinary catheter.

In addition to these specific risk factors for bladder infections, there are general risk factors for all UTI types. These include:

risk factors for uti

  • being pregnant
  • having diabetes, as a person experiences changes to their immune system that make them more prone to UTIs
  • having an enlarged prostate
  • having low levels of estrogen, such as when a woman is post-menopausal
  • having a history of kidney stones, which can block the flow of urine through the urinary tract

Women are also more likely than men to get UTIs because their urethra is shorter. The bacteria have less distance to go to reach the bladder and can cause infections.

Differences Between Pyelonephritis And Uti

Kidney Infection Yeast Infection

Categorized under Disease | Differences between pyelonephritis and UTI

Pyelonephritis vs UTI

UTI or urinary tract infections are one of the common infections affecting human beings. Since the urinary system is in constant proximity to metabolic waste from the body, it is more prone to infections than other systems of the body.

UTIs can be classified as upper and lower based on the site of infection. Infections of the kidney and ureter are called as upper UTI while those of the urinary bladder, prostate and urethra are termed as lower UTI. Colloquially speaking, when not specified, a UTI means a lower UTI, more specifically a bladder infection . Pyelonephritis is an infection of the renal pelvis, the region of the kidneys from where the urine drains into the ureters and is carried away to the urinary bladder. It is relatively rarer than UTI as it higher up and chances of the bodys immune system eradicating the infection by then are high.

Children and elderly are more prone to UTIs. In adults, women are more prone to UTIs than men especially during pregnancy, sexual intercourse and menopause. Use of spermicides also increases the risk of UTI. At least 50% of women have suffered from a UTI at some point in their lives. In men, UTIs are rarer and when present, commonly complicated with another underlying condition like an enlarged prostate etc. Catheterisation is a frequent cause for developing a UTI.

Take Home Points:

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Treatment Of Kidney Infection

Most kidney infections need prompt treatment with antibiotics to stop the infection damaging the kidneys or spreading to the bloodstream.

You may also need painkillers.

If you’re especially vulnerable to the effects of an infection , you may be admitted to hospital and treated with antibiotics through a drip.

Most people who are diagnosed and treated promptly with antibiotics feel completely better after about 2 weeks.

People who are older or have underlying conditions may take longer to recover.

Treatment For Utis Vs Kidney Infection Treatment

UTIs, including kidney infections, can be treated with a course of antibiotics. The type of antibiotic can depend on the type of bacteria thats causing your infection as well as how severe your infection is.

The doctor will often start you on an antibiotic that works against a wide variety of UTI-causing bacteria. If a urine culture is performed, the doctor may switch your antibiotic to one thats most effective at treating the specific bacterium thats causing your infection.

Simple UTIs can be treated with short 3- to 5-day courses of antibiotics. Treatment for kidney infections generally lasts 7 to 14 days, depending on which class of antibiotic is prescribed.

You may begin to feel better after only a few days on antibiotics. However, you should still make sure that you complete your entire treatment course as prescribed. If you do not take all of your antibiotics, the stronger bacteria may not be killed, causing your infection to persist and flare up again.

If youre pregnant, your doctor may also request a repeat urine sample following a kidney infection, even if your symptoms have resolved. This allows them to check to see whether your infection has completely cleared.

If there are still bacteria present in the sample, you may need another course of antibiotics. Persistence of bacteria can potentially harm an unborn baby.

People with severe kidney infections may need to be hospitalized. In this case, you may receive antibiotics and fluids intravenously.

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How Are Utis Diagnosed

Only a health care provider can treat urinary tract infections. The first thing a doctor will do is confirm that a person has a UTI by taking a clean-catch urine specimen. At the doctor’s office, you’ll be asked to clean your genital area with disposable wipes and then pee into a sterile cup.

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.

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  • 5 answers
  • Women’s Health Queensland Wide provides free health information for Queensland women.View Profile

    Hi Narelle,UTI stands for urinary tract infection or otherwise known as cystitis. This common condition is usually caused by a bacterial infection. Symtoms include -Frequent painful urination- often burning sensation-Urgent need to urinate, even after urinating-Passing small amounts of urine each time-Cloudy, smelly urine or blood in the urine.Take a look at our fact sheet on cystitis for more info.Thrush is a common vaginal infection and is caused by the overgrowth of yeast-like fungi called Candida. Symptoms include -A thick white creamy vaginal discharge-Itchiness and redness in and around the vagina-Discomfort and or pain during sexual intercourse-Burning on urination.Take a look at our fact sheet on thrush and other vaginal infections for more info.RegardsWomens Health EducatorHealth Information Line, Womens Health Queensland WideWomen living in Queensland can also call our Health Information Line – a free information and referral service for Queensland women – on 3839 9988 or 1800 017 676 .Please note that all health information provided by Womens Health Queensland Wide is subject to this disclaimer

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    Important Notes For Uti Treatment

    To ensure your UTI is completely gone, its important to finish your course of antibioticseven if it doesnt burn when you pee anymore. If you dont, you risk developing an antibiotic-resistant UTI, which makes your UTI more complicated to treat.

    If youve dealt with bladder infections or UTIs before, youve likely heard about home remediessuch as cranberry juice and drinking a lot of wateras antibiotic alternatives. Though home remedies may sound like an easier shortcut, there isnt any evidence that shows they will treat a bacterial infection thats already present. Though things like staying hydrated may be recommended alongside antibiotics as a part of your treatment plan, they dont substitute the effectiveness of antibiotics.

    How to get help 24/7

    The sooner you can get treated for your UTI, the better. If youre feeling the burning and the urgency, its time to start your visit. The longer you wait, the more chance the infection has of traveling to your kidneys. But dont let that scare you! You can start an online visit at Virtuwell 24/7yes, even in the middle of the night when your bladder wont let you sleepand UTIs are very treatable.

    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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    How Common Are Urinary Tract Infections


    Urinary tract infections are very common, occurring in 1 out of 5 women sometime in their lifetime. Though UTIs are common in women, they can also happen to men, older adults and children. One to 2% of children develop urinary tract infections. Each year, 8 million to 10 million visits to doctors are for urinary tract infections.

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    Uti Or Gonorrhea: Whats The Difference

    At times, it can be difficult to tell whether you have a urinary tract infection or a sexually transmitted infection like gonorrhea. Indeed, there are many similarities between the two, while both these infections are also relatively common. At the same time, it doesnt help that your bladder and urinary tract are located near your reproductive organs.

    Obviously, the best way to determine if youre suffering from UTI or gonorrhea is to get tested at a clinic or laboratory. Still, there are plenty of things that can clue you in on your true condition. We discuss some of the most important distinctions and other relevant details below.

    What Is UTI?

    As its name suggests, UTI is an infection in the urinary tract. Most cases of UTI are caused by a bacteria called E. coli. Most strains of this bacteria are generally harmless. In fact, humans have naturally occurring E. coli in our intestines and stomach. But when the bacteria get into the urinary tract, it is then that the infection occurs. There are two common types of UTI: cystitis, which occurs in the bladder, and urethritis, which occurs in the urethra.

    What Is Gonorrhea?

    How Are UTI and Gonorrhea Different?

    Another difference is that more women suffer from worse and recurring cases of UTI. This is because their urinary tracts are so much closer to their rectum, where some of the bacteria can come from. On the other hand, men tend to experience more serious symptoms of gonorrhea.


    Difference Between Uti And Yeast Infection

    UTI vs Yeast Infection

    Urinary tract infections and yeast infections may present with similar symptoms in the early stages of the disease. Both may present with lower abdominal pain and painful micturition. Despite similar presentations, there are many differences between the two, which is discussed below in detail while highlighting the clinical features, symptoms, causes, investigation and diagnosis, prognosis, and the course of treatment of urinary tract infection and yeast infection individually.

    Yeast Infection

    Yeast is afungus called candida. There are a large number of species of candida. Candida albicans is the most common yeast that infects humans. Yeast infection is also known as thrush because all candida infections in humans cause a characteristic white discharge. Yeast infection is commonly seen in immunocompromised, elderly and pregnant individuals. Candida occurs in earnest, in HIV patients and ICU patients. In the ICU, prolonged ventilation, urinate catheterization, intravenous lines, regular use of broad spectrum antibiotics, and IV nutrition are known risk factors for introducing yeast infections to the system. Yeast lives without causing any harm on skin, throat and vagina. However, Candida may infect the same sites if the opportunity arises. Oral thrush, esophageal thrush and vaginal thrush are the commonest yeast infections encountered in humans.

    Urinary Tract Infection

    What is the difference between Urinary Tract Infection and Yeast Infection?

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    Types Of Urinary Tract Conditions

    A urinary tract infection refers to an infection in any area of the urinary tract. Conditions that can occur in the urinary tract or with the potential to lead to complicated infections include:

    • Urethritis: An inflammation of the urethra, usually caused by an infection for example, a sexually transmitted disease such as chlamydia
    • Cystitis: An infection in the bladder that has often moved up from the urethra, also one of the most common UTIs
    • Nephritis: Any type of kidney inflammation
    • Pyelonephritis: An infection in one or both kidneys

    Uti Or Std: How To Tell The Difference

    How To Tell The Difference Between a UTI and an IC Flare – Revised (Interstitial Cystitis Network)

    Urinary Tract Infections are commonly diagnosed in thousands of people every year the same is true with the most common Sexually Transmitted Diseases like gonorrhea and chlamydia.

    The symptoms of many common STDs can cross over and be similar to some of the symptoms you might experience if you have a UTI. This can be worrying for anyone who isnt sure which they have: Sexually transmitted infections and conditions can be more serious than your routine UTI and they are more likely to transfer from one person to another.

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    What Is The Difference Between Cystitis And Uti

    A UTI can occur in any part of the urinary tract: the urethra, ureters, kidneys, or bladder. If the infection stays in the urethra, its considered urethritis. The urethra is a tube that allows the body to expel urine and is connected to the bladder. If the infection occurs in the lower urinary tract and bladder, its considered cystitis. The ureters, two narrow tubes, drain urine from the kidneys into the bladder. Kidneys are responsible for removing waste and excess water from the body. If the infection moves to the upper urinary tract and kidneys, its considered pyelonephritis.

    Causes Of Utis Vs Causes Of Kidney Infection

    Your urinary tract is normally well equipped to prevent infections. The regular passage of urine helps to flush pathogens out of the urinary tract.

    When bacteria make their way into your urinary tract and begin to multiply, UTIs occur. This can lead to symptoms. These bacteria have often come from your gastrointestinal tract and spread from your anus into your urinary tract.

    Women are more likely to develop UTIs than men. This is because the female urethra is shorter than the male urethra and closer to the anus. Bacteria have a shorter distance to travel in order to establish an infection.

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    What About Kidney Stones Are They Involved Here Somehow

    Sort of. A kidney stone isnt an infection, but a collection of salt and minerals that hardens and turns into a stone. While some stones may be small others can be much larger. They may stay in the kidney, or begin to move into the ureter, the tube that connects the kidney and the bladder. When this happens, kidney stones can become extremely painful.

    Kidney stones can be tricky, since they may have many of the same symptoms as a UTI or a kidney infection pain when urinating, needing to urinate often, and cloudy or strong smelling urine, blood in the urine, fever, nausea or vomiting. And while stones often pass on their own, larger stones sometimes need to be broken up, or removed.

    Sometimes, kidney stones can lead to a urinary tract infection or a kidney infection, so its important to get them checked out by your doctor. And, since the symptoms are so similar, getting a checkup is probably a good idea anyway just to rule out the possibility of an infection, and to make sure the stone is moving along as it should.

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