What Is A Uti
Painful and inconvenient, there are over 150 million global cases of UTIs a year. A UTI is an infection that occur in the kidneys, bladder, or urethra. Indeed, there are separate names for the types of infections that happen in each distinct area of the urinary system. Bladder infections are known as Cystitis, while Urethritis is an infection of the Urethra. Both of these tend to be uncomfortable, but are usually easier to treat with the right medications than an upper urinary tract infection.
This is because an upper urinary tract infection, otherwise known as Pyelonephritis impacts the kidneys, and can cause significant damage if left untreated. Indeed, with an upper urinary system infection, you can expect not only pain but nausea, fever and chills as well.
What Can Cause Blood In Urine
Blood in urine is a symptom that does not typically appear on its own, and is generally a sign of an underlying problem. It is important to understand that the cause of blood in urine is not always infection. There are multiple causes for this, some more serious than others. Possible causes of blood in urine besides infection are:
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Blood-thinning medicines like aspirin and warfarin are useful in dissolving blood clots, but can also push microscopic traces of blood into a persons urine. Prolonged usage of Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs like ibuprofen can also cause blood to appear in someones urine.
- Internal Hemorrhaging
Trauma, injury, and overexertion during exercise may all cause internal injuries that break blood vessels. This can cause blood to leak into body cavities and discharge in a patients urine. A blow to the kidneys might also rupture cell walls and blood vessels, therefore causing bleeding during urination. Hemorrhaging may also occur when an aneurysm or balloon-like expansion of an abdominal artery ruptures.
- Stones in the Kidney or Ureter
- Prostate Problems
And Dont Forget: There Are Things You Can Do To Prevent Getting A Uti In The Future
Once youve gotten your first UTI, youll probably want to avoid them like the plague in the future. Here are some steps you can take to reduce your risk of UTIs, according to the Mayo Clinic:
Stay hydrated: Drinking lots of liquidsespecially watercan help stave off UTIs. The reason: Youll have to pee more often, which better ensures bacteria will be flushed from your urinary tract.
Pee after sex: This will help flush out any bacteria that may have set up shop around your urethra.
Dont use anything scented down there: Products that have a fragranceincluding tampons and douches, the latter of which you dont need, BTWcan irritate your genitals and urethra.
Maybe switch up your birth control method: Certain birth control methods may make you more likely to get a UTI because of how they affect your vaginal flora, like diaphragms or spermicide-treated condoms.
Can Dehydration Cause Blood In Urine
While dehydration is less likely to be a direct cause of blood in the urine, it can lead to conditions that can cause hematuria. For example, low urine volume due to consistent dehydration can lead to kidney stones that can cause blood in urine. Dehydration may also be a contributor when extreme exercise causes blood in the urine.
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If your childs illness or injury is life-threatening, call 911.
Treatment for a Bladder Infection
Prevention of Bladder Infections in Girls
Treating Whats Causing Blood In Your Urine
Treatment for blood in urine will depend on what medical condition is causing the hematuria. For example, if you have a urinary tract infection, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics. If you have an enlarged prostate, your doctor may prescribe medication to shrink it.
For bladder or kidney stones, your doctor may use shock wave treatment, known as extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy. They may remove the stone by inserting a scope through the urethra, or they may recommend surgery.
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What Is Hemorrhagic Cystitis
Hemorrhagic cystitis is a medical condition that occurs when your urinary bladder lining becomes inflamed and bleeds.
Your bladder is a muscular sac in your pelvis that stores urine before its released from your body. Hemorrhagic means bleeding, and cystitis is inflammation of the bladder.
Who might get hemorrhagic cystitis?
Hemorrhagic cystitis occurs in people who experience damage to the bladder lining. Its usually associated with infection or cancer treatment.
How common is hemorrhagic cystitis?
Hemorrhagic cystitis isnt common in the general population. But it can affect 10% to 35% or more of people receiving certain cancer treatments.
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.
Pelvic And/or Rectal Pain
Often UTI pain is not as localized to the genitalia or urinary tract as one would expect. It is common for there to be diffuse pain in the pelvis and a person cannot isolate the pain to one exact spot. While pelvic pain is a common complaint in women with UTIs, men often complain of rectal pain as well. Sometimes the rectal pain is mistaken for a problem with the colon especially if there are little to no urinary symptoms present. It is also not uncommon for a person to experience this diffuse pelvic pain for days or even weeks before more specific urinary symptoms arise.
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How Do I Prevent Utis
Among healthy young women who have their first UTI, 25% will have a recurrence within 6 months. In some cases this represents relapse of the same infection, while other cases are new infections. Women in either case are generally retreated with good results.
Women who have a long history of recurrent UTIs can be offered prophylaxis: In this case, antibiotics are used to prevent UTIs, rather than waiting for them to occur. Several regimens have been used successfully. Since UTIs are commonly related to sexual activity, one very effective regimen involves taking a single dose of antibiotic with every sexual encounter. Other regimens, including daily doses of antibiotics, are occasionally necessary.
Urinary Tract Infection Treatment
Urinary Tract Infection Antibiotics
Urinary tract infections would have to be one of the more common reasons why a women will go to her chemist to seek a resolution for a condition rather than her doctor. There are various pharmaceutical drugs your pharmacist will recommend to treat cystitis, and they will be generally recommended unless a woman is experiencing blood in her urine or is vomiting.
If she is pregnant with a UTI, she will most probably in all cases be asked to check in with her doctor or report this to her midwife as soon as possible. Usually, a single course of treatment is offered and this will clear up the condition, but if symptoms persist even after trying the OTC drug, she will be told to consult her doctor.
Urinary Tract Infection Tests
Your doctor will most probably want to prescribe antibiotics in this case, whilst he or she awaits the results of the urine test. This will also indicate whether the antibiotic is sensitive to the specific bacteria or whether there is any resistant bacteria which is not going to respond to the antibiotic. But what happens if you get a recurrent UTI you ask? Your doctor may in such a case refer you to a specialist who will perform ultrasound scanning or even an X-ray of the urinary system and perhaps a cystoscopy, an examination of the bladder with a minuscule camera.
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What Are Treatment Options For Ic
There is not a single treatment that works for everyone. There are two FDA-approved treatments for IC: an oral medication called pentosan polysulfate sodium and a once-weekly treatment where dimethyl sulfoxide is placed directly into the bladder through a catheter. However, some doctors may try other treatments if their patients dont respond to these medications.
How Are Utis Treated
UTIs are generally treated with a short course of oral antibiotics. Most cases will resolve with 3 to 7 days of a first-line antibiotic. Most patients will feel better after a day or two of antibiotics, but it is important to complete the entire prescribed course of antibiotics to make sure the infection is completely cleared. Occasionally, infection with resistant bacteria may require retreatment with a different type of antibiotic.
If you have been diagnosed with a UTI, its generally a good idea to drink plenty of fluids to flush out the bacteria. Grape juice or cranberry juice may assist in clearing the bacteria by acidifying the urine.
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What To Do If You See It
It sounds strange, but you may not always know that you have blood in your urine. Sometimes, thereâs so little that it only shows up under a microscope when your doctor is testing you for something else. When you can see it, it can be alarming. But most of the time, the causes arenât serious. In some cases, though, the symptom points to a bigger health problem.So you should always let your doctor know about it.
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How Do I Know If The Treatment Isnt Working
If the treatment isnt working, your symptoms will stay the same, get worse, or you will develop new symptoms. Call your doctor if you have a fever , chills, lower stomach pain, nausea, and vomiting. You should also call your doctor if, after taking medicine for 3 days, you still have a burning feeling when you urinate. If you are pregnant, you should also call your doctor if you have any contractions.
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Can Urinary Tract Infections Be Prevented Or Avoided
There are many lifestyle choices that can help you prevent UTIs. These are some of the things you can do to protect yourself from them:
- Drink plenty of water to flush out bacteria. For some people, drinking cranberry juice may also help prevent urinary tract infections. However, if youre taking warfarin, check with your doctor before using cranberry juice to prevent urinary tract infections. Your doctor may need to adjust your warfarin dose or you may need to have more frequent blood tests.
- Dont hold your urine. Urinate when you feel like you need to. Some children dont go to the bathroom often enough. If your child does this, teach him or her to go to the bathroom several times each day.
- Wipe from front to back after bowel movements. Teach your child to wipe correctly.
- Urinate after having sex to help wash away bacteria.
- Use enough lubrication during sex. Try using a small amount of lubricant before sex if youre a little dry.
- If you get urinary tract infections often, you may want to avoid using a diaphragm as a birth control method. Ask your doctor about other birth control choices.
- Avoid taking or giving your child bubble baths.
- Wear loose-fitting clothing , and dress your child in loose-fitting clothing.
- If you are uncircumcised, wash the foreskin regularly. If you have an uncircumcised boy, teach him how to wash his foreskin.
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What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Hematuria
Microscopic hematuria has no visible signs. Doctors will only know someone has it if a urine test finds it.
Gross hematuria is seen because it changes the color of urine, which can happen with only a little bit of blood. Often, red or tea-colored urine is the only symptom.
In some cases, hematuria can be one of many symptoms of another condition. For example, if a bladder infection is causing the hematuria, other symptoms might include fever, pain while peeing, and lower belly pain.
Silent Utis: How They Start
That weekend was supposed to be so fun. I always looked forward to hosting my grandchildren, who lived 45 miles away, overnight. But this time my extreme fatigue stole most of the energy and joy from our precious time together. The strange thing is, it wasnt the I probably did too much yesterday kind of fatigue. It was concerning, Mashunkashey said. That heavy blanket of fatigue covered me the rest of the week. All I wanted to do was lie down, and that just wasnt like me Im not a napping kind of person. She visited her doctor to ask about the exhaustion, but her doctor couldnt provide an answer.
This wasnt like other health issues Id had in the past, though. Years earlier I was prone to urinary tract infections. I once had six in the span of six months. I dreaded that unmistakable backache, the painful urination, and the urgency to pee, not to mention the doctors appointments and prescription co-pays for all those antibiotics. Thankfully, I seemed to have outgrown UTIs, but this new health complaint was such a mystery It worried me, Mashunkashey said.
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Are There Other Conditions That May Seem Like A Uti
We encourage women with urinary symptoms to be seen in the office to confirm the diagnosis. Urinary infections are sometimes mistaken for other conditions and vice-versa. Conditions that cause similar conditions include:
- Vaginal infections are usually characterized by discharge, irritation, itching, and/or odor, but burning on urination is occasionally the only symptom.
- Genital herpes can cause burning with urination.
- Ovarian cysts can cause lower abdominal pain.
- Bladder stones can sometimes cause blood in the urine.
With the exception of women who have already had numerous culture-proven UTIs, women who have symptoms suggesting a UTI should be seen in the office to rule out other causes for their symptoms.
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How Is The Cause Of Hematuria Diagnosed
If youre seeing your doctor for hematuria, theyll ask you about the amount of blood and when you see it during urination. Theyll want to know how often you urinate, any pain youre experiencing, if you see blood clots, and what medications youre taking.
Your doctor will then give you a physical examination and collect a sample of your urine for testing. The analysis of your urine can confirm the presence of blood and detect bacteria if an infection is the cause.
Your doctor may order imaging tests such as a CT scan, which uses radiation to create an image of your body.
Another possible test your doctor may want to do is a cystoscopy. This involves using a small tube to send a camera up your urethra and into your bladder. With the camera, your doctor can examine the interior of your bladder and urethra to determine the cause of your hematuria.
Treatment Options For Uti
UTIs dont go away on their own. In fact, they may get worse, and the infection could spread elsewhere in your body without proper care. Seeking prompt medical care is the best way to stop the infection and prevent UTI complications like kidney infection.
If you notice signs of a UTI, our Advanced Urology team is equipped to diagnose and treat it so you start feeling better. Most acute UTIs resolve with a course of prescription antibiotic medication.
If youre dealing with chronic UTIs or ongoing bladder pain, you may benefit from a longer course of low-dose antibiotics. Our team may recommend at-home urine tests throughout treatment or prescribe medication to take when you have sexual intercourse to help prevent recurrent UTIs.
Be sure to take all of your medication, even if your UTI symptoms disappear during the course of treatment. Finishing your antibiotic is the only way to ensure the infection is gone and avoid UTI complications.
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