Causes And Risk Factors Of Urinary Tract Infections
UTIs are caused by bacteria entering the urinary tract, which consists of the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. While any of these parts can become infected, most UTIs involve the lower urinary tract, which includes the bladder and the urethra . A UTI that infects the bladder is called cystitis one that infects the urethra is called urethritis.
The majority of UTIs that affect the bladder and the urethra are caused by E. coli or other bacteria that are normally found in the digestive tract, which can travel from the anus to the urethra. UTIs that affect the urethra are also caused by sexually transmitted infections, including herpes, gonorrhea, chlamydia, and mycoplasma. Most of the time, urinating flushes out lingering bacteria in the urethra before it causes problems, though your body isnt always able to do this.
Less often, UTIs involve the upper urinary tract, which includes the kidneys and the ureters . A UTI infection in the kidneys, called pyelonephritis or a kidney infection, most often begins in the bladder and moves up through the ureters to one or both kidneys. In certain cases, a kidney infection can lead to serious health problems.
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An enlarged prostate can also be the cause of other problems. If the enlarged prostate is causing symptoms, the best treatment would be a natural remedy. In the meantime, there are treatments for a wide range of conditions that cause a man to experience pain. A common surgical procedure involves an electric loop, laser, or electro-stimulation. The procedure is a safe and effective option for treating enlarged or symptomatic BPH.
How Do You Diagnose And Treat A Uti
To diagnose a UTI, your doctor may ask for a sample of your urine. Theyll use this for a urine culture to determine the levels of germs and bacteria in your urine. In rare cases, your doctor may also do an X-ray or ultrasound to get a more comprehensive look at your urinary tract.
If a UTI is confirmed, depending on the location and severity of the infection, your doctor will prescribe antibiotics.
For an uncomplicated lower tract infection, your doctor will likely prescribe a course of antibiotics to be taken over five to seven days.
If you have an upper tract infection, your doctor may prescribe antibiotics for three weeks or longer.
In the rare case of a severe infection, your doctor may recommend hospital treatment and a course of intravenous antibiotics.
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How Are Utis Treated And Prevented
UTIs are usually treated with antibiotics. The specific antibiotic used and how long treatment lasts depend on the type of bacteria causing the infection and if there are any other health complications.
Some common antibiotics used to treat UTIs include:
There are also some steps you can take that may help prevent UTIs. These include:
Practicing good hygiene, including wiping from front to back for women, which helps prevent the spread of bacteria from stool.
Drinking plenty of water, which increases urination and can help flush out bacteria.
Avoiding some types of birth control, like spermicide, which in some women may increase the risk of UTIs.
If you develop symptoms of a UTI, its important to let your healthcare provider know right away so that you get the right diagnosis and treatment.
Are There Home Remedies For A Urinary Tract Infection
There are a variety of self-care measures and other treatments available for urinary tract infections.
- Use a hot-water bottle to ease the pain.
- Drink plenty of water.
- Avoid coffee, alcohol, and spicy foods, all of which irritate the bladder.
- There are some indications that cranberry juice can help fight a urinary tract infection.
Because the symptoms of a urinary tract infection mimic those of other conditions, someone should see a health care professional if a urinary tract infection is suspected. A urine test is needed to confirm an infection. Self-care is not recommended.
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What Are The Signs & Symptoms Of Utis
UTIs can cause such signs as:
- pain, burning, or a stinging sensation when peeing
- an increased urge or more frequent need to pee
- waking up at night a lot to go to the bathroom
- belly pain in the area of the bladder
- foul-smelling pee that may look cloudy or contain blood
If you have any symptoms of a UTI, you’ll need to go to a doctor right away. The sooner you begin treatment, the less uncomfortable you’ll be. Call your doctor’s office or clinic. If you can’t reach your doctor, you can visit an urgent care center or hospital emergency room. The most important thing is to take action as soon as possible.
What Are The Causes Of Urinary Tract Infection In Men
- Urinary Tract Infections in Men are usually caused due to infection by bacteria such as Escherichia coli, Klebsiella, Pseudomonas, or Staphylococcus
- The infection can spread from the urethra through the urinary tract and reach the bloodstream from the kidneys
- Rarely, fungus and other parasites can also cause UTI in Men
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When Should People Seek Medical Care For A Uti
Any adult or child who develops any of the symptoms of a urinary tract infection needs to be evaluated by a medical professional, preferably within 24 hours. Most medical offices can test urine for infection by using a quick urine “dipstick” test.
- Someone who has symptoms of a lower urinary tract infection should call a health care professional for an appointment, preferably on the same day that symptoms are recognized.
- Someone who has symptoms of an upper urinary tract infection involving the kidneys should call a health care professional immediately. Depending on the situation, he or she will recommend either a visit to the office or a hospital emergency department.
If someone has symptoms of a lower urinary tract infection and any of the following applies, he or she may be at risk for complications of the urinary tract infection.
- Vomiting and inability to keep down clear fluids or medication
- Not better after taking antibiotics for two days
- Having diabetes or another disease that affects the immune system
- Taking medication that suppresses the immune system such as cancer chemotherapy
Infants, children, and elderly people with any of the signs and symptoms of UTI should see their health care professional as soon as possible or go to an emergency department for evaluation.
The usual treatment for both simple and complicated urinary tract infections is antibiotics. The type of antibiotic and duration of treatment depends on the circumstances.
For Those Who Experience Frequent Utis Managing Risk Factors May Help With Prevention
In some people, urinary tract infections come back again and again. Women, especially, are likely to have recurrent UTIs. While recurrences usually develop within three months of the original infection, having more than two within six months is technically considered a recurrence.
Besides precautions and at-home strategies to help prevent UTIs, sometimes antibiotics are used as a preventive measure for those with frequent UTI recurrences.
Managing risk factors by maintaining good hygiene, such as wiping from front to back for women and avoiding spermicides can lower your likelihood of repeat UTIs.
Urinary Symptoms In Men
The lower urinary tract consists of the bladder , prostate gland and urethra . This information refers to problems affecting this part of the body as urinary symptoms, but your doctor might refer to them as LUTS . Urinary symptoms are common. About 3 in 10 men aged 50 or older have them but they can also affect younger men.
There are many different symptoms, which fall into 2 broad categories: voiding and storage.
What Is The Long
UTIs become more serious the further the infection spreads, so seeking prompt medical treatment is essential to a positive outlook.
UTIs can be prevented by staying hydrated each day and not holding urine in for long periods of time. You can also reduce the risk by regularly including cranberries in your diet.
Most UTIs will go away after treatment, but some can become recurrent. The same bacteria are usually the cause of recurrent infections, but in most cases, you can get rid of recurring infections too.
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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.
Symptoms Of Uti Vs Std In Males
Having sex vaginal, oral, or anal increases your risk of a sexually transmitted disease or infection, notes the Mayo Clinic. While many sexually transmitted infections have no signs or symptoms, others can mimic signs and symptoms of a UTI.
Chlamydia and gonorrhea, for instance, are caused by bacteria that can infect the genital tract. Like UTIs, these STDs can cause pain or a burning sensation during urination.
Though theres little data in men, STDs are commonly misdiagnosed as UTIs in women, according to a study published in 2015 in the Journal of Clinical Microbiology. Talk to your doctor if you think theres a possibility you could have an STD. Bacterial STDs, such as chlamydia and gonorrhea, can be treated with antibiotics.
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Are Any Tests Needed
A urine sample can confirm the diagnosis and identify the germ causing the infection. Further tests are not usually necessary if you are otherwise well and have a one-off infection. However, your doctor may advise tests of your kidney, prostate gland, or bladder if an underlying problem is suspected.
An underlying problem is more likely if the infection does not clear with an antibiotic medicine, or if you have:
- Symptoms that suggest a kidney is infected .
- Recurring urine infections. For example, two or more in a three-month period.
- Had problems with your kidney in the past, such as kidney stones or a damaged kidney.
- Symptoms that suggest an obstruction to the flow of urine.
- Blood-stained urine which persists after treatment with antibiotics.
Tests may include:
- An examination of your prostate gland by examination of your back passage .
- Tests to see how well your bladder is working, called urodynamic tests.
Complications Of Urinary Tract Infections
Delayed treatment for UTIs can lead to complications. Most UTIs cause no lasting damage if they are treated quickly. But if left untreated, UTIs can lead to complications that include:
- Recurring infections
- Narrowing of the urethra in men
- A potentially life-threatening infection called sepsis, especially when kidneys are infected
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Another type of prostate issue is chronic prostatitis, or chronic pelvic pain syndrome. This condition causes pain in the lower back and groin area, and may cause urinary retention. Symptoms include leaking and discomfort. In severe cases, a catheter may be required to relieve the symptoms. If the problem is unresponsive to other treatments, your doctor may suggest a surgical procedure. If these do not work, your symptoms could progress and become chronic.
An acute bacterial infection can cause a burning sensation. Inflammation of the prostate can affect the bladder and result in discomfort and other symptoms. This is the most common urinary tract problem in men under 50, and the third most common in men over 65. The symptoms of acute bacterial prostatitis are similar to those of CPPS. Patients may experience a fever or chills as a result of the infection.
A bacterial infection can also lead to prostate issues. Acute bacterial infections can be hard to treat. Some men with a bacterial infection may need to take antibiotics to prevent or treat symptoms. Symptoms of the disease include fever and chills, pain in the lower back and the tip of the penis. Some men may have blood in the urine, frequent urination, and blood in the urine. If you suffer from acute bacterial prostatitis, a medical professional should be able to prescribe you the appropriate treatments to prevent the disease.
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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Urine Infection In Older People
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If you have a urine infection, you have germs in your bladder, kidneys or the tubes of your urinary system. Urine infections are more common in older people, and there is more likely to be an underlying cause.
In this article
Urine Infection in Older People
In this article
Related Conditions And Causes Of Uti
There are a number of health conditions that share some symptoms with urinary tract infections, including:
The following conditions may make you more susceptible to developing a UTI and increase the severity of symptoms:
Type 2 diabetes
And having a UTI can increase a man’s risk for benign prostatic hyperplasia .
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What Is The Urinary Tract
The urinary tract makes and stores urine, one of the body’s liquid waste products. The urinary tract includes the following parts:
- Kidneys: These small organs are located on back of your body, just above the hips. They are the filters of your body removing waste and water from your blood. This waste becomes urine.
- Ureters: The ureters are thin tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to your bladder.
- Bladder: A sac-like container, the bladder stores your urine before it leaves the body.
- Urethra: This tube carries the urine from your bladder to the outside of the body.
What Causes Utis In The Elderly
Anything that introduces bacteria into the urinary tract or impedes the flow of urine and causes urine to stay in the bladder is very likely to cause a UTI.
Eighty five percent of all UTI infections are caused by Escherichia coli or E. coli bacteria. Several other types of bacteria make up the other fifteen percent, but E.coli is by far the most prominent, and it can make its way into the urinary tract several different ways.
E. coli is found naturally where digestion occurs in the gastrointestinal tract, so it can sneak into the urinary tract. This commonly happens because the end of the gastrointestinal tract is the anus, and the beginning of the urinary tract is the urethra. The anus and the urethra are close to one another, especially on the female body.
Due to the proximity of the entry and exit of the above two pathways, poor hygiene can cause UTIs. Back-to-front wiping after a bowel movement can transfer bacteria into the urethra. Wearing soiled underwear or disposable undergarments too long can also introduce bacteria into the urinary tract. Bacteria in both cases is an infectious traveler that multiplies.
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What Is The Treatment Of A Urine Infection
- A course of an antibiotic medicine will usually clear the infection quickly. This is usually for seven days. You should see a doctor if your symptoms are not gone, or nearly gone, after a few days.
- Paracetamol or ibuprofen will usually ease any pain, discomfort, or high temperature .
- Have plenty to drink to help prevent a lack of fluid in the body if you have a fever and feel unwell.
Urinary Tract Infections During Pregnancy: Symptoms Treatment And Common Questions
In addition, as the uterus grows throughout pregnancy, it can put pressure on the bladder, making it more difficult to empty completely.
Pregnancy can also make a UTI more difficult to treat, which can have serious consequences, including pyelonephritis preterm labor low birth weight and .
A urinalysis and a urine culture are routinely performed at an initial prenatal visit to screen for UTIs, but if you’re pregnant and suspect you may have an infection, seek medical attention quickly.
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What Symptoms Are Associated With A Uti
Urinary tract infections dont always have symptoms, and the symptoms can depend on where the infection is.
Some common symptoms associated with a lower tract UTI include:
Pain or burning during urination
Frequent and urgent urination
Pain in the pelvic area
Waking at night to urinate
Blood in the urine
When the upper tract is involved, symptoms can include:
Pain in your back or side
Fevers and chills
Nausea or vomiting
How Can I Take Care Of Myself
- Follow your healthcare provider’s treatment. Take all of the antibiotic that your healthcare provider prescribes, even when you feel better. Do not take medicine left over from previous prescriptions.
- Drink more fluids, especially water, to help flush bacteria from your system.
- If you have a fever:
- Take aspirin or acetaminophen to control the fever. Check with your healthcare provider before you give any medicine that contains aspirin or salicylates to a child or teen. This includes medicines like baby aspirin, some cold medicines, and Pepto Bismol. Children and teens who take aspirin are at risk for a serious illness called Reye’s syndrome.
- Keep a daily record of your temperature.
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