Who Is At Risk From Utis
UTIs can affect any person at any age, but certain groups are at greater risk.
Women’s oestrogen levels also decline with age. This can cause the walls of the urinary tract to become thinner and drier. The protective mucous membrane, or mucose, also becomes less acidic which reduces its ability to fight off infection. This is why oestrogen hormone treatment is recommended to prevent UTIs.
Other groups at greater risk of getting a UTI are the elderly, people with diabetes mellitus, persons wearing an indwelling catheter.
Not being able to empty the bladder properly can also increase the risk of a UTI, as bacteria can grow in the remaining urine. Causes for residual urine include constipation, outflow obstruction caused by an enlarged prostate or a prolapse, and spinal cord injury or nerve damage, which interferes with the normal functioning of the urinary tract.
A Word From Get Meds Info
Women who experience significant, recurrent problems with UTIs should definitely discuss the condition with their doctors. Symptom relief with over-the-counter products is not the same as a cure. Furthermore, its possible that what you think is a UTI may actually be a different infection in disguise. Therefore, its a good idea to get screened for STDs and other genital infections or conditions.
How Do I Know If I Have A Urinary Tract Infection
While only a medical professional like your GP can determine for sure if you have a Urinary Tract Infection, there are several UTI symptoms that you will notice which can be key indicators. These include:
- General discomfort in your lower stomach or abdomen
- A burning sensation when urinating
- Unusually frequent visits to the toilet
- The sudden need to urinate
- The feeling that the bladder is still full after going to the toilet
- Seeing blood in your urine
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms or if you notice anything unusual, speak to your health professional for a proper diagnosis and treatment plan. However, if you are also experiencing back or side pain, fevers and chills, nausea and vomiting, in addition to the above, you should seek medical assistance immediately. For more information, visit our page: Cystitis and UTI Symptoms Know When to Seek Help.
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What Is Colonisation And Biofilm
When people have had several UTIs, and several courses of antibiotics for a UTI, antibiotics may initially appear to work and symptoms often resolve for a while. However, the more resistant organisms are known to sometimes attach themselves to the bladder wall as well as forming colonies of resistant bacteria within other parts of the body such as the kidney.
These colonies of resistant bacteria can multiply in number over time, and become immune to the effect of the antibiotics. The bacteria become harder to eradicate, even when taking powerful antibiotics, as they form a biofilm. This is where the colonies of resistant bacteria form a protective layer around themselves, making it even more difficult for antibiotics to reach and kill them.
An antibiotic resistant UTI can then become a chronic condition and can often cause frequently recurring outbreaks of infection, with an increased risk of serious kidney infection and even sepsis.
How Do Urinary Tract Infections Usually Develop
Infections of the lower urinary tract, which is made up of the bladder and urethra, are the most common site of a UTI. They typically develop when bacteria from the gut enters through the urethral opening and moves up to infect the bladder.
Bacteria from the gut typically enters through the urethral opening, which you urinate from:
Infections of the upper urinary tract, including the kidneys, are less common but often cause more severe symptoms. They develop when bacteria continue to travel up the urinary tract from the bladder, through the ureters and into the kidneys.
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How Are Utis Treated
UTIs are treated with antibiotics. After several days of antibiotics, your doctor may repeat the urine tests to be sure that the infection is gone. It’s important to make sure of this because an incompletely treated UTI can come back or spread.
If someone has a lot of pain from a UTI, the doctor may recommend a medicine to help relieve the spasm and pain in the bladder. This will turn pee a bright orange color, but it’s harmless and will usually make a person much more comfortable within hours. In the case of a kidney infection, a doctor may prescribe pain medicine.
If you’ve finished all the medicine or if your symptoms aren’t much better after 2 to 3 days of treatment, contact your doctor.
Drink lots of water during and after treatment because each time you pee, the bladder cleanses itself a little bit more. Cranberry juice may also be helpful. Skip drinks that containe caffeine , such as soda and iced tea.
People who get a doctor’s help for a UTI right away should be clear of symptoms within a week. Someone with a more severe infection may need treatment in a hospital so they can get antibiotics by injection or IV .
A doctor may tell people with UTIs to avoid sex for a week or so, which lets the inflammation clear up completely.
Treatment For A Uti Caused By E Coli
The first line of treatment for any bacterial infection is antibiotics.
- If your urinalysis comes back positive for germs, a doctor will likely prescribe one of several antibiotics that works to kill E. coli, since its the most common UTI culprit.
- If a urine culture finds a different germ is behind your infection, youll get switched to an antibiotic that targets that germ.
- You may also receive a prescription for a drug called pyridium, which helps reduce bladder pain.
- If you tend to get recurrent UTIs , you may need to be on low-dose antibiotics daily for a few months.
- Your doctor may also prescribe other medications for treatment that are not antibiotic based.
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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.
What Is The Urinary Tract
The urinary tract is part of our plumbing system that produces and removes urine or pee from our bodies.
The urinary tract is made up of:
- Kidneys. Two bean-shaped organs called kidneys sit just below your ribcage on either side of your spine. They filter your blood to remove waste and excess fluid, which results in the production of urine.
- Bladder. The bladder is an organ that acts as a reservoir of holding tank for the urine that is produced by your kidneys. It sits in your pelvis between your hip bones.
- Ureters. Ureters are the tubes that carry urine from your kidneys to your bladder.
- Urethra. The urethra is the tube that runs from your bladder to the outside of your body, through which your urine exits your body when you urinate or pee.
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Urgent Advice: Ask For An Urgent Gp Appointment Or Get Help From Nhs 111 If:
You think you, your child or someone you care for may have a urinary tract infection and:
- a very high temperature, or feeling hot and shivery
- a very low temperature below 36C
- are confused, drowsy or have difficulty speaking
- have not been for a pee all day
- have pain in the lower tummy or in the back, just under the ribs
- can see blood in their pee
These symptoms could mean you have a kidney infection, which can be serious if it’s not treated as it could cause .
You can call 111 or get help from 111 online.
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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How Do You Get Strep Throat
Transmission of strep bacteria occurs when an infected person coughs or sneezes near someone else, who then inhales the contaminated droplets into their nose or mouth.
Strep throat can also spread through direct contact with infected saliva or nasal secretions. Sharing silverware with someone who has an infection can pass on the bacteria.
Is There A Connection Between Uti And Incontinence
Urinary incontinence can affect anybody at any age, but it is more common when we get older and in connection with other medical conditions. Therefore, it is not unusual for people with urinary incontinence to have additional problems that contribute to a higher risk of UTI. Some examples include not being able to completely empty the bladder, reduced immune defence functions, and chronic illnesses. Bowel incontinence is another factor that increases the risk of infection.
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Why Do Girls And Women Get More Frequent Utis
Some people who get frequent UTIs may have an abnormality in their urinary tract or a problem with how it functions. The most common functional problem of the urinary tract is called vesicoureteral reflux a condition in which some urine flows backward, or refluxes, from the bladder into the ureters and even up to the kidneys.
Bacteria can find their way into the urethra by several ways. During sexual intercourse, the bacteria in the vaginal area may be pushed into the urethra and eventually end up in the bladder, where urine provides a good environment for the bacteria to grow. Bacteria may also be introduced into a girl’s bladder by wiping from back to front after a bowel movement, which can contaminate the urethral opening. An increased risk of UTIs has been associated with the use of spermicides and diaphragms as contraceptives.
Symptoms Of Group B Strep
In This Article
If you have a group B strep infection, you may have some of the following signs and symptoms:
Symptoms of group B strep infection may include a high fever and chills, rapid heart rate, low blood pressure, and reduced urine output. A woman with one or more of these symptoms who has recently given birth may have a group B strep infection.
Signs and symptoms of group B strep infection in newborns may include lethargy, irritability, poor feeding, low body temperature , rapid breathing, and seizures. Some newborns with a group B strep infection appear healthy at birth but may become ill within several days after delivery.
Adults with group B strep blood infections may experience fever and chills, low blood pressure , reduced urine output, abdominal pain, and respiratory distress.
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What Questions Should I Ask My Doctor
- What caused this and how can I avoid it in the future?
- How do I prevent spreading this to other people?
- How do I use my medication?
- How long will it take to feel better?
- When should I follow up with you?
- What can I do to help my symptoms at home?
A note from Cleveland Clinic
Bacteria live all around us millions even live on or in us. They help us digest nutrients, protect us from harmful invaders and even help in making delicious foods. But, like puppies in a shoe factory, they can cause a lot of damage if theyre somewhere theyre not supposed to be. Bacterial infections can be a temporary nuisance, but they can also turn into a life-threatening situation. Always check with a healthcare provider to make sure you know the best way to manage a bacterial disease.
Why Might People Think Urinary Tract Infections Are Contagious
Many infections are contagious and can be picked up from other people or surfaces, so it’s not surprising that people might think UTIs are caught in the same way. Especially if they’re unaware that a bacteria that lives in the gut commonly causes them.
As highlighted above, sexual activity can put you at increased risk of developing a UTI because it can spread the bacteria that causes them. This can lead to people mistakenly thinking that UTIs are like other contagious sexually transmitted infections . Another complicating factor is that some STIs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, produce symptoms that mimic those of a UTI.
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Bacteria Are To Blame
UTIs are often caused by E. coli, bacteria that are normally found in the digestive tract and on the skin around the rectal and vaginal areas. When the bacteria enter the urethra, they can make their way up into the bladder and cause an infection.
Bacteria can get into the urethra several ways. During sexual intercourse the bacteria in the vaginal area may be pushed into the urethra and eventually end up in the bladder. Bacteria may also be introduced into a woman’s bladder by wiping from back to front after a bowel movement, which can contaminate the urethral opening. The use of spermicides and diaphragms as contraceptives may also increase the risk of getting a urinary tract infection.
Vaccines Targeting Bacterial Toxins And Proteases
The UPEC pore-forming toxin HlyA has also received attention as a potential vaccine target and was evaluated in a mouse model of pyelonephritis to assess protection against renal damage114,115. Vaccination with HlyA reduced the incidence of renal scaring compared with controls however, it did not protect against UPEC colonization of the kidneys115. In addition, in a mouse model of UTI, vaccination with the P. mirabilis haemolysin, HpmA, did not provide protection against bacterial colonization116. However, vaccination with Pta, an alkaline protease with toxic effects towards epithelial cells, displayed promising results in a mouse model of UTI, protecting against upper UTI, although bacterial burdens in the bladder remained unaffected116. Thus, although haemolysins and proteases might provide effective vaccine targets for preventing upper UTIs, additional studies are needed to determine the effectiveness of these enzymes as targets for vaccines.
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How Can I Prevent Bacterial Infections
Ways to reduce your risk of various types of bacterial infections include:
- Get vaccinated. There are vaccines for many bacterial diseases, including tetanus, whooping cough, diphtheria and bacteria that cause certain forms of meningitis , pneumonia and bloodstream infections.
- Practice good hygiene. This includes maintaining good hand-washing habits, wearing clean and dry clothes and not sharing personal items with other people.
- Keep wounds clean. Breaks in your skin allow bacteria to get in. Clean and cover cuts or wounds in your skin.
- Practice safe food habits. This includes storing food properly, heating meat and poultry to a temperature that kills bacteria and washing or peeling fruits and vegetables before eating.
- Use a condom or dental dam during any kind of sex.
- Protect yourself from bug bites. Wear protective clothing, use bug spray and check yourself and your pets for ticks after being outdoors.
A Pharmacist Can Help With Utis
You can ask a pharmacist about treatments for a UTI.
A pharmacist can:
- offer advice on things that can help you get better
- suggest the best painkiller to take
- tell you if you need to see a GP about your symptoms
Some pharmacies offer a UTI management service. They may be able to give antibiotics if they’re needed.
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Bladder Cells Regurgitate Bacteria To Prevent Utis
One interesting observation is that bladder cells can regurgitate bacteria to prevent UTIs. In a study published in the journal Cell in 2015, Duke Medicine researchers and their colleagues had described how bladder cells can physically eject the UTI-causing bacteria E. coli. The study findings suggest there is potential for bladder cells to help treat recurrent UTIs.
For the study, using UTI mouse models and cultured human bladder cells, the researchers found that the host cells can sense when lysosomes are malfunctioning. The host cells then trigger the lysosome and ejects its content, which includes bacteria.
The bacteria that exit the bladder cells have an encased cell membrane. This is thought to ensure that the bacteria are eliminated during urination while avoiding bacterial reattachment to the bladder wall.
What Are Utis And Who Should Care
UTIs are infections of the urinary tract. The urinary tract is the system that creates, collects, and gets rid of urine from your body. When bacteria enter the urinary system and find a place to grow, this is called a UTI.
Your urinary tract begins with your kidneys, which create urine. A pair of tubes called ureters carry urine from your kidneys down into your bladder. Urine is held in your bladder until you are ready to empty it. When you go to the bathroom, urine comes out through your urethra, which is the tube that connects your bladder to the outside.
Infections of the kidney, called pyelonephritis, can be quite serious. Bladder infections, called cystitis, are the most common type of UTI. Usually, when people talk about a UTI, they are talking about a bladder infection.
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