Causes Of Urinary Tract Infections
A UTI is caused by a bacterial infection in the urinary tract. The urinary tract is where our bodies make and expel urine and is made up of the kidneys, the ureters, the bladder and the urethra. You can get an infection in the lower or upper part of the urinary tract. Upper UTIs are potentially more serious because there is a risk of kidney damage and in acute cases can cause kidney failure or blood poisoning. Urinary tract infection is a term used to cover a variety of infections.
The three main causes of UTIs are:
- Cystitis infection in the bladder
- Urethritis infection in the urethra
- Pyelonephritis infection in the kidney
What Are The Treatments For A Bladder Infection Vs A Uti
How a doctor deals with a patient’s UTI depends on where it’s located, what caused it, how severe the infection is, and whether there are other complicating factors to consider.
An uncomplicated bladder infection can sometimes clear up on its own. But given that it can turn into a more severe infection, you might be better off with a prescription for some oral antibiotics to kill off the bacteria. Per the American Urological Association , treatment for uncomplicated bladder infections typically involves taking one of the following:
- A single dose of Fosfomycin.
- Nitrofurantoin for five days.
- Trimethoprim-sulfamethoxazole DS for three days.
If you have a more complicated bladder infection, you may need to rely on other types of antibiotics and take them for up to 14 days to clear out the infection. Either way, you should start to feel better within a couple of days of taking the meds but be sure to finish the full course of antibiotics. Otherwise, resistant bacteria could grow and create a new infection that’s harder to cure.
Doctors may also give you additional fluids through the IV. And that’s assuming you don’t get a complication, such as sepsis. Once the IV antibiotics help you feel better, you can generally go home and finish treating the UTI with more antibiotics for a total of 14 days, per the AUA.
Urinary Tract Infections In Men
Men can get UTIs, particularly if they have trouble with urine flow. Older men who experience prostatitis are at a higher risk. If the bladder is not emptying properly, the build up ofurine makes it more difficult to cure the infection.
A small number of young men may get a UTI. In males, this is usually the result of a sexually transmitted disease.
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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 a UTI more complicated to treat.
If youve dealt with bladder infections or UTIs before, youve likely heard about home remedieslike drinking lots of cranberry juice and water as alternatives to taking antibiotics. Although home remedies may sound like an easier alternative, they wont clear up an infection. Things like staying hydrated may be recommended as a part of your treatment plan, but there is no substitute for antibiotics.
How to get UTI treatment, 24/7
The sooner you get treated for your UTI, the better. If youre feeling the burn and urgency to go, its time to start a visit. The longer you wait, the more risk that an infection could travel to your kidneys. You can start an online visit at Virtuwell anytimeyes, even in the middle of the night when your bladder wont let you sleepand UTIs are very treatable.
Favorite Sites To Find Docs
SWIU is all about supporting women urologists and the urologic issues that impact women. One of our favorite SWIU perks is their searchable database for prospective patients to find a local female urologist.
An excellent source for overall urinary health info, UCF also offers a tool to help would-be patients find a urologist near them. You can search by zip code, distance, and through eight urinary specialties, including pediatric urology.
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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 Infection Vs Uti: Whats The Difference
When it comes to taking care of yourself down there, youre not alone if you have more questions than answers. Many people feel anxious at the mere thought of talking to their doctor about reproductive or sexual health concerns. Things like urinary tract infections and bladder infections happen to a lot of people and are nothing to be ashamed of, but they do need to be addressed ASAP for the sake of your health.
It can be tough to distinguish a UTI from a bladder infection if youve never had one before. Were here to help you out. Well go over the different types of UTIs and bladder infections, what causes each, treatment and prevention strategies, and potential complications to be aware of. Plus, well provide advice on when to seek medical help.
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What Would Happen If You Left An Uti Untreated
What would happen if you left an uti untreated?
What Are the Consequences of an Untreated UTI?
- Kidney Infection. If a UTI is left untreated, the bacteria within your bladder can travel up into your kidneys.
- Pregnancy Complications.
What are the consequences of an untreated UTI? An untreated UTI can result in the spread of the infection from the bladder into the bloodstream a medical condition known as sepsis. Sepsis is life-threatening and can cause you to experience fever, chills, dizziness, rapid breathing, increased heart rate or confusion.
What happens if UTI is untreated for a week? What happens if you leave a UTI untreated for a week? If left untreated for long, the worsening symptoms can lead to permanent kidney damage and septic shock where some of the organs stop functioning.
Can you cure UTI without Meds? So, to cure UTI in 24 hours without taking harmful antibiotics, you can follow the home remedies given here: Eat plenty of probiotic This will increase the percentage of good bacteria which will fight the infection-causing bacteria in the bladder.
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.
But there are many reasons to use condoms. Theyre important for reducing the spread of sexually transmitted infections and preventing unwanted pregnancy.
To help prevent friction and skin irritation from condoms, be sure to use enough water-based lubricant during sex.
Avoid using condoms coated with spermicide.
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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.
Bladder Infections In Women
40 percent of women in the United States develop a urinary tract infection at some point in their life.
This is because women have shorter urethras, making the path to the bladder easier for bacteria to reach. Womens urethras are also located closer to the rectum than mens urethras. This means there is a shorter distance for bacteria to travel.
During pregnancy, changes in the urinary tract increase the risk of an infection. Changes in the immune system also increase risk during pregnancy.
Some forms of birth control, like diaphragms and spermicides, may increase your risk of urinary tract infections.
Women are also more prone to recurring infections. About of women will experience a second infection within 6 months of their first infection.
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Things You Can Do Yourself
To help ease pain:
- takeparacetamolup to 4 times a day to reduce pain and a high temperature for people with a UTI, paracetamol is usually recommended over NSAIDs such as ibuprofen or aspirin
- you can give childrenliquid paracetamol
- rest and drink enough fluids so you pass pale urine regularly during the day, especially during hot weather
Its important to follow the instructions on the packet so you know how much paracetamol you or your child can take, and how often.
It may also help to avoid having sex until you feel better.
You cannot pass a UTI on to your partner, but sex may be uncomfortable.
Taking cystitis sachets or cranberry products has not been shown to help ease symptoms of UTIs.
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Home Remedies For Urinary Tract Infection Symptoms
In addition to antibiotics, many people seek natural, at-home remedies to help UTIs. A heating pad can relieve pressure and pain, and wearing loose cotton clothing is recommended. For those with recurrent UTIs, modifying certain habits may help: Choose fragrance-free personal care products to reduce the risk of irritation, and cut back on foods that can irritate the bladder caffeine, alcohol, spicy food, raw onions, citrus fruits, carbonated drinks, and artificial sweeteners.
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How Do Utis Affect Pregnancy
Changes in hormone levels during pregnancy raise your risk for UTIs. UTIs during pregnancy are more likely to spread to the kidneys.
If you’re pregnant and have symptoms of a UTI, see your doctor or nurse right away. Your doctor will give you an antibiotic that is safe to take during pregnancy.
If left untreated, UTIs could lead to kidney infections and problems during pregnancy, including:
- Premature birth
- Low birth weight
Stages Of Cystitis And Urinary Tract Infections
Stages of cystitis
While cystitis is more serious than bacteria in the urethra, it is still easy to treat when its caught early. If cystitis isnt treated, the bacteria can spread to your kidneys. Kidney infections are rare but serious.
Stages of urinary tract infections
Urinary tract infections begin on the outside of the body at the urethra. Some bacteria stop there and do not travel further into the urinary tract. If bacteria do make it into the bladder, they can cause cystitis.
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What Are Other Possible Causes Of Painful Urination
A painful burning feeling when you urinate is often a sign of a urinary tract infection . However, painful urination can occur even if you dont have an infection. Certain drugs, like some used in cancer chemotherapy, may inflame the bladder. Something pressing against the bladder or a kidney stone stuck near the entrance to the bladder can also cause painful urination.
Painful urination can also be caused by vaginal infection or irritation. You might be sensitive to chemicals in products such as douches, vaginal lubricants, soaps, scented toilet paper, or contraceptive foams or sponges. If it hurts to urinate after youve used these products, youre probably sensitive to them.
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 Cystitis Whats The Difference
Is it a UTI or cystitis? Unless youre medically trained this may not be the first question you ask yourself when rushing back to the toilet for another painful experience.
A UTI is a general term used to describe an infection that can occur anywhere in the urinary tract .
When an infection has been medically diagnosed in the bladder lining, it is called cystitis and this is the most common type of UTI seen in women.
Having a better idea of what UTIs and cystitis are can help explain why you may have those painful symptoms and why different types of self-care may be useful in relieving symptoms or even preventing them reoccurring. It may also help you decide when its time to get help.
Check If Its A Urinary Tract Infection
Symptoms of a UTI may include:
- pain or a burning sensation when peeing
- needing to pee more often than usual during the night
- pee that looks cloudy
- 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
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How Can You Tell The Difference Between A Bladder Infection And A Uti
Theres a reason that people use the terms UTI and bladder infection interchangeablythe symptoms are largely the same.
- Burning sensation while peeing
- Feeling of urgency to pee, but produce very little urine
The most common type of UTI is a bladder infection. Therefore if you have a UTI, its likely in your bladder. And thankfully, bladder infections are relatively simple to treat.
If you have a UTI that isnt a bladder infection, you may experience additional symptoms.
- Lower back pain that feels more severe than a bladder infection
- Nausea and/or vomiting
- Pinkish or reddish urine
If you think you have a UTI, its important to get treated quickly to prevent the infection from spreading to your kidneys.
Is A Bladder Infection The Same As A Urinary Tract Infection
Often, the terms UTI and bladder infection are used interchangeably. But there is a distinction to be made between the two.
Bladder infections are a type of UTI, but not all urinary tract infections are bladder infections. A UTI is defined as an infection in one or more places in the urinary tractthe ureters, kidneys, urethra, and/or bladder. A bladder infection is a UTI thats only located in the bladder.
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Oh My Aching Bladder: Is It A Uti Or Ic
OH MY ACHING BLADDER: IS IT A UTI OR IC?
One in five women will have at least one urinary tract infection in her lifetime, according to the National Kidney Foundation. And, if youve ever had a urinary tract infection, you are all too familiar with the burning urination and constant feeling of needing to go to the bathroom. But, did you know that some of the symptoms of a UTI are similar or the same as symptoms women experience when they have interstitial cystitis or painful bladder syndrome? How is a woman to know if its a UTI or painful bladder syndrome?
What is a Urinary Tract Infection ?
A UTI is an infection of the urinary tract, most commonly affecting the bladder and the urethra . When bacteria gets into the urethra and travels to the bladder, a UTI is often the result. With a UTI, the bladder lining also becomes red, swollen and inflamed.
Common symptoms of a UTI include:
- Urinary urgency or the feeling that you need to urinate often. You may have to run to the bathroom several times per hour only to find you urinate only a few drops.
- A burning sensation when urinating.
- Abdominal pain, pelvic pressure and/or lower back pain. You may experience lower abdominal discomfort, bloating and/or feel pressure in the lower pelvic area, especially when urinating.
- Blood in the urine. Urine can appear to have a reddish or dark orange tiny, which signifies blood in the urine from the infection.
- Cloudy urine that has an odor
- Fever and/or chills
Can I Become Immune To The Antibiotics Used To Treat A Uti
Your body can actually get used to the antibiotics typically used to treat a urinary tract infection . This happens in people who have very frequent infections. With each UTI and use of antibiotics to treat it, the infection adapts and becomes harder to fight. This is called an antibiotic-resistant infection. Because of this, your healthcare provider may suggest alternative treatments if you have frequent UTIs. These could include:
- Waiting: Your provider may suggest that you watch your symptoms and wait. During this time, you may be encouraged to drink plenty of fluids in an effort to flush out your system.
- Intravenous treatment: In some very complicated cases, where the UTI is resistant to antibiotics or the infection has moved to your kidneys, you may need to be treated in the hospital. The medicine will be given to you directly in your vein . Once youre home, you will be prescribed antibiotics for a period of time to fully get rid of the infection.
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