Diagnosing A Urinary Tract Infection In Older Adults
Vague, uncommon symptoms such as confusion make UTIs challenging to diagnose in many older adults. Once your doctor suspects a UTI, its easily confirmed with a simple urinalysis.
Your doctor may perform a urine culture to determine the type of bacteria causing the infection and the best antibiotic to treat it.
There are home UTI tests that check urine for nitrates and leukocytes. Both are often present in UTIs. Because bacteria are often in the urine of older adults to some degree, these tests arent always accurate. Call your doctor if you take a home test and get a positive result.
More severe infections may require a broad-spectrum antibiotic such as ciprofloxacin and levofloxacin .
You should start antibiotics as soon as possible and take them for the entire duration of treatment as prescribed by your doctor. Stopping treatment early, even if symptoms resolve, increases the risks of recurrence and antibiotic resistance.
Antibiotic overuse also increases your risk for antibiotic resistance. For this reason, your doctor will likely prescribe the shortest treatment course possible. Treatment typically lasts no more than 7 days, and your infection should clear up in a few days.
Its important to drink plenty of water during treatment to help flush out the remaining bacteria.
Treatment Of Recurrent Utis
Some people develop recurring urinary tract infections and may require further testing to determine the cause. Treatment may include longer doses of antibiotics or more potent doses of antibiotics delivered intravenously. Recurrent UTIs may be a symptom of a more chronic problem and require further examination by a trained urologist.
Couling, R. . Managing lower UTI in adults in the community. Nurse Prescribing. 6, 485-489.
Huang, C.-H. et al. . Cranberry-Containing Products for Prevention of Urinary Tract Infections in Susceptible PopulationsA Systematic Review and Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials. Archives of Internal Medicine. 172:988-996.
OShea, L. . Diagnosing urinary tract infections. Practice Nurse. 40, 20-25.
Riley, J. . Urinary tract infection. Conditions and Procedures in Brief, 1-3.
Stapleton, A.E. et al. . Recurrent Urinary Tract Infection and Urinary Escherichia coli in Women Ingesting Cranberry Juice Daily: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Mayo Clinic Proceedings. 87:143-150.
Urinary tract infection. . Mayo Clinic. Retrieved from .
Urinary tract infectionCauses. . University of Maryland Medical Center.
Urinary tract infections in adults. . National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information. Publication No. 122097.
How To Treat A Uti At Home
Need a quick UTI cure? Drop the apple cider vinegar and grab some fast-acting antibiotic relief. Order UTI meds online and get same-day UTI treatment. Taking UTI antibiotics as soon as possible is the best defense against the infection spreading to the kidneysand way cheaper than an ER bill! And best of all, you don’t need health insurance, so say “buh-bye, UTI.”
Get same-day UTI antibiotics
Treat a UTI from home when you order meds online. Skip the doctor’s office and go straight to the pharmacy. Nice
Prevent chronic UTI’s
Taking probiotics with your UTI meds helps restore balance to fight UTI’s naturally, so you can enjoy the little things, like a burn-free pee
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UTI symptoms are tough enough. You shouldn’t have to add going to the doctor to your to-do list, just to feel better
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Over The Counter Medication For A Uti
Question posted by strawb3rry on 8 Oct 2013
Last updated on 8 October 2013 by sandyhb
Uristat is another OTC pain relief for UTIs. I think its the same ingredient as Azo. Basically these medications numb the bladder, which greatly reduces the pain. They are a godsend, for me at least. Your urine will temporarily turn orange with these meds. As was stated in a previous answer, these OTC meds do not treat the infection itself, only the symptoms. It is not a given that a UTI will lead to kidney infection, but it can possibly do so. I have frequent UTIs and most are mild and go away within a day or two. If they become severe, I go to the doctor for antibiotics.
AZO Standard is sold OTC for bladder pain. There are also store generics available that work as well and are cheaper. It doesnt treat the underlying infection though. You need antibiotics for this. You can use the AZO in tandem with antibiotics to help with the pain while the antibiotics work.
There is one for the bladder pain, called azo. There is nothing over the counter for the infection and that must be treated, or it will go to the kidneys and can damage them. See your dr.
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Azo Urinary Pain Relief Maximum Strength Tablets
Phenazopyridine hydrochloride is the active ingredient of this OTC medication for urinary pain, a chemical which, when excreted into the urine, has a local analgesic effect.
AZO Urinary Pain Relief® Maximum Strength Tablets, unfortunately, does nothing to fight the infection, but only masks the symptoms. Do not take it for longer than three days and dont take it if you have liver problems. If you cover up your symptoms, you might not notice that your UTI is getting worse.
Phenazopyridine is also responsible for the bright orange color of your urine, that indicates the medicine has reached your bladder.
Make sure to not wear white underwear or contact lenses , since this active ingredient can permanently discolor them.
Keep in mind that some animal studies demonstrate a possible link between phenazopyridine and cancer in female rats. Phenazopyridine hydrochloride is reasonably anticipated to be a human carcinogen based on sufficient evidence of carcinogenicity from studies in experimental animals according to National Toxicologyprogram report.
AZO Urinary Pain Relief® Maximum Strength Tablets contains 97.5 mg of Phenazopyridine per dose.
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Clinical Presentation And Diagnosis
Patients with cystitis often present with a frequent, persistent urge to urinate despite passing a small amount, dysuria or a burning sensation during urination, or suprapubic heaviness.7 Patients with pyelonephritis often experience flank pain or tenderness, a low fever , chills, nausea, vomiting, and malaise with or without symptoms of cystitis.2 Patients with a lower or upper UTI may experience hematuria or notice that their urine is cloudy or has a strong odor. Elderly patients tend to present with nonspecific symptoms including altered mental status, change in eating habits, lower abdominal pain, and gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation.6
In most patients who present with signs and symptoms of UTIs, a history of illness is the most important diagnostic tool, especially when symptom onset is sudden or severe and when vaginal discharge and irritation are not present.2,3 Sometimes, however, UTI diagnosis cannot rely solely on patient symptoms because some patients are asymptomatic this is more common in older adults than in younger adults.6 Laboratory tests, urine-sample tests, and pelvic examinations should be performed in patients with urinary tract symptoms to properly diagnose UTIs.2,3 Laboratory tests for UTIs include assessments for the presence of bacteriuria and pyuria, nitrite, leukocyte esterase, and antibody-coated bacteria.2
Which Antibiotic Will Work Best
Your doctor will take a urine sample to confirm that you have a UTI. Then the lab will grow the germs in a dish for a couple of days to find out which type of bacteria you have. This is called a culture. Itâll tell your doctor what type of germs caused your infection. Theyâll likely prescribe one of the following antibiotics to treat it before the culture comes back:
Which medication and dose you get depends on whether your infection is complicated or uncomplicated.
âUncomplicatedâ means your urinary tract is normal. âComplicatedâ means you have a disease or problem with your urinary tract. You could have a narrowing of your ureters, which are the tubes that carry urine from your kidneys to your bladder, a narrowing in the urethra which transports urine from the bladder out of the body, or, you might have a blockage like a kidney stone or an enlarged prostate . Its also possible you have a urinary fistula or a bladder diverticulum.
To treat a complicated infection, your doctor might prescribe a higher dose of antibiotics. If your UTI is severe or the infection is in your kidneys, you might need to be treated in a hospital or doctors office with high-dose antibiotics you get through an IV.
Your doctor will also consider these factors when choosing an antibiotic:
- Are you over age 65?
- Are you allergic to any antibiotics?
- Have you had any side effects from antibiotics in the past?
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How Should I Take Pyridium
Use Pyridium exactly as directed on the label, or as prescribed by your doctor. Do not use in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.
Take Pyridium after meals.
Drink plenty of liquids while you are taking Pyridium.
Pyridium will most likely darken the color of your urine to an orange or red color. This is a normal effect and is not harmful. Darkened urine may also cause stains to your underwear that may be permanent.
Phenazopyridine can also permanently stain soft contact lenses, and you should not wear them while taking this medicine.
Do not use this medicine for longer than 2 days unless your doctor has told you to.
This medication can cause unusual results with urine tests. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using this medicine.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
What If The Infection Does Not Clear Up With Treatment
Most infections clear up with treatment. However, if an infection does not clear up, or if you have repeated infections, you may be given some special tests such as:
a type of x-ray called an intravenous pyleogram , which involves injecting a dye into a vein and taking pictures of your kidney and bladder
an ultrasound exam, which gives a picture of your kidneys and bladder using sound waves
a cytoscopic exam, which uses a hollow tube with special lenses to look inside the bladder.
Antibiotic Warnings And Treatment Concerns
The most commonly prescribed antibiotics for uncomplicated UTIs are similar in efficacy. But its important to note that ampicillin, amoxicillin, and sulfonamides are no longer the drugs of choice for combatting UTIs because of the emergence of antibiotic resistance. In addition, amoxicillin and clavulanate has been shown in previous research to be significantly less effective than others when it comes to treating urinary tract infections.
Also, as noted above, the FDA advises against using fluoroquinolones for uncomplicated UTIs. These medicines should only be considered if no other treatment options are available. In some cases, such as a complicated UTI or kidney infection, a healthcare provider may decide that a fluoroquinolone medicine is the best option, notes the American Academy of Family Physicians.
For pregnant women, some common antibiotics, such as fluoroquinolones and tetracyclines, should not be prescribed because of possible toxic effects on the fetus. But oral nitrofurantoin and cephalexin are considered good antibiotic choices for pregnant women with asymptomatic bacteriuria and acute cystitis, according to past research.
Ok Got It But Then What Is A Kidney Infection
A kidney infection is, in essence, a UTI that has spread into the kidneys. While this type of infection is rare, its also very dangerous and if youre experiencing any of the following signs of a kidney infection, you should see a doctor immediately:
Upper back or side pain
Fever, shaking or chills
While most kidney infections can be treated simply with an antibiotic, if left untreated, a kidney infection can cause damage to your kidneys, leading to chronic kidney disease. The bacteria could even spread to your bloodstream creating a life-threatening situation.
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Home Remedies For Utis
Until there are more advancements in UTI treatment, antibiotics remain the most effective standard treatment. However, prescription medication doesnt have to be the only line of defense.
Along with standard therapy, you can incorporate home remedies to feel better sooner and reduce the likelihood of recurrent infections.
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Prevention And Treatment Of Kidney Infection
Antibiotics are started as soon as the doctor suspects pyelonephritis and samples have been taken for laboratory tests. The choice of drug or its dosage may be modified based on the laboratory test results , how sick the person is, and whether the infection started in the hospital, where bacteria tend to be more resistant to antibiotics. Other factors that can alter the choice or dosage of drug include whether the personÃ¢s immune system is impaired and whether the person has a urinary tract abnormality , including the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. Blockage can be completeÃ¢Â¦ read more ).
Outpatient treatment with antibiotics given by mouth is usually successful if the person has:
No nausea or vomiting
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What Are Urinary Tract Infections And Kidney Infections
Most commonly known as UTIs, Urinary tract infections can affect any part of the urinary tract. When we hear of a UTI, it usually involves the lower tract. The most common UTIs are cystitis, a bladder infection, and urethritis, an infection of the urethra. Kidney infections are limited to the kidneys and can be much more severe.
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Etiology And Risk Factors
Urine is generally sterile, and the causative agents for most UTIs originate in bowel flora that enter the periurethral area. Most UTIs are caused by one organism UTIs caused by multiple organisms may indicate contamination. The causative agents are gram-positive and gram-negative organisms, as well as some fungi.1 The gram-negative bacterium Escherichia coli accounts for almost 90% of all episodes.3,5 Other common causative agents include Staphylococcus saprophyticus, Klebsiella pneumoniae, Enterococcus faecalis, group B streptococcus, Proteus mirabilis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Staphylococcus aureus, and Candida species.
How To Prevent Utis From Occurring
The age-old adage still applies-prevention is better than cure, especially if you want to avoid the use of antibiotics and over-the-counter UTI medicine altogether.
To prevent UTIs in the first place, there are some measures you can take. These include:
- Urinating more frequently instead of holding it in for long periods
- Urinating after sexual intercourse
- Wiping from front to back after urination
- Drinking lots of water
To add to the last point, plenty of water intake doesn’t just help you prevent UTIs it also has other benefits. Take a look at these other 9 reasons why you should drink more water.
For those with recurring UTIs, Hiprex could help. This medicine is not an over-the-counter medicine for UTI, however. It is only available by prescription.
What about cranberries for prevention? Studies have also shown that drinking cranberry juice or taking cranberry supplements may help to prevent or reduce the recurrence of UTIs1,2, 3. So, it doesn’t hurt to try it-just be sure to consult with your doctor first!
What Should I Know About Storage And Disposal Of This Medication
Keep this medication in the container it came in, tightly closed, and out of reach of children. Store it at room temperature and away from excess heat and moisture .
Unneeded medications should be disposed of in special ways to ensure that pets, children, and other people cannot consume them. However, you should not flush this medication down the toilet. Instead, the best way to dispose of your medication is through a medicine take-back program. Talk to your pharmacist or contact your local garbage/recycling department to learn about take-back programs in your community. See the FDAs Safe Disposal of Medicines website for more information if you do not have access to a take-back program.
It is important to keep all medication out of sight and reach of children as many containers are not child-resistant and young children can open them easily. To protect young children from poisoning, always lock safety caps and immediately place the medication in a safe location â one that is up and away and out of their sight and reach.
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Urinary Tract Infection Treatment
Usually doctors prescribe antibiotics to treat UTIs. Once you start taking medication, your symptoms should go away in a few days, but this doesnt mean you can stop taking the medicine. While you are on the mediation, drink plenty of water to help flush the bacteria out of your system.
To help ease the pain of a UTI, you can take an over-the-counter pain reliever and try putting a heating pad on your lower abdomen.
If you have recurrent UTIs , your doctor may recommend additional treatments.
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Urinary Tract Infection Causes & Risk Factors
Your urinary tract can usually protect itself from infection, but certain factors increase your risk of developing a UTI.
- Menopause and post-menopause, which cause the lining of the urethra to get thinner as estrogen levels decrease.
- Diabetes and other chronic illnesses or medications that affect your immune system and make it harder for your body to fight infections.
- Conditions that make it difficult to completely empty your bladder, such as enlarged prostate and bladder and kidney stones.
- Long-term use of catheters
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