Urinary Tract Infection: Symptoms, Treatment & Prevention
Urinary tract infection (UTI) is a common urological condition wherein any part of the urinary system (including kidneys, ureters, urethra, and bladder) gets infected with bacteria. Most commonly UTI develops in the lower urinary tract comprising of the urinary bladder and urethra. The best urologist doctor in Indore shares, it has been reported that women are more prone to have a urinary tract infection than men because of their shorter urethras and sometimes the genetic factors. If the infection occurs only to the urinary bladder it can be painful and bothersome but if it spreads to the kidneys, it can have serious consequences.
People who are at risk of UTI must take some preventive steps and those who already are affected must be treated with antibiotics as prescribed by their doctor.
What causes urinary tract infection?
Urine is the by-product of the filtration process carried out by kidneys. It is formed when the waste products and excess water or body fluids are removed from the blood. Normal urine is devoid of bacteria and passes the urinary system from kidneys to urethra without being contaminated. However, the bacteria (E. coli i.e. a gastrointestinal bacterium) that invade the urinary system through the urethra (a tube that takes out the urine from the urinary bladder to outside of the body) can cause inflammation and infection.
A person can get UTI after a sexual intercourse by introducing bacteria in the urinary system or by using an uncleaned toilet seat. Diabetic women may be at great risk of having UTI because of the weakened immune system. Other risk factors that can lead to UTI include kidney stones, a spinal cord injury, stroke, multiple sclerosis, and hormonal changes.
Urinary Tract Infection Symptoms:
Not every urinary tract infection show signs and symptoms but if they do, they may include:
- A burning feeling while urinating
- An intense, frequent urge to urinate even though little urine is passed out
- Dark and cloudy urine sometimes with blood
- A strange, strong odor of the urine
- Chills or fever (a sign that the kidney is also infected)
- Pelvic pain in women mainly is felt in the center of the pelvis and around the pubic bone area.
- Feeling shaky or tired
- Pressure or pain in the lower abdomen or back.
Types of Urinary Tract Infection:
Urinary tract infections can be of different kinds based on the location where infection occurs. These include:
- Pyelonephritis: It is an infection of the kidneys. Signs and symptoms include nausea, chills, and shakes, high fever, vomiting, and pain at back or flanks (sides of the body)
- Cystitis: It is an infection of the urinary bladder. In this type, the person may feel a frequent urge to urinate or have pain while urinating. Some may also have bloody and cloudy urine, have lower abdomen discomfort, and pelvic pressure.
- Urethritis: It is the infection of the urethra that can cause a burning sensation while urinating or some discharge in the urine. Some sexually transmitted infections like gonorrhea, mycoplasma, herpes, chlamydia can cause urethritis.
Treatment for urinary tract infections:
- Best kidney specialists in Indore prescribe antibiotics to kill or inhibit the growth of the invaded bacteria. In case a person is having about three or even more UTIs in a year, the patient shall need a particular treatment plan. Some of the available options are-
- Intake of a low dose of an antibiotic for a prolonged duration to prevent recurrent UTI.
- Taking a single dose of an antibiotic after having sex acts as an immediate risk factor of getting a UTI.
- Antibiotics treatment for few days every time the symptoms of UTI appear.
- Prophylaxis without using antibiotics.
Some tips that a person shall follow to reduce the risk of having another UTI include:
Keep the body hydrated: Drinking plenty of water will dilute urine and ensure that more urine is passed out. This can allow the invaded bacteria to be flushed from the urinary tract before there is an infection.
Maintain sanitary hygiene: After every bowel movement or urination, the person shall clean or wipe the back and front to prevent the spread of bacteria from the anus to the vagina and urethra. Even before having sex, the genital area shall be kept clean.
Empty urinary bladder immediately after sex: Drink lots of water to flush the bacteria that have entered the urinary system during sexual intercourse.
Avoid the use of some birth control methods: This includes unlubricated condoms, diaphragm, or spermicidal jelly as they can contribute to bacterial growth.
Vishesh Jupiter Hospital is the best multispecialty hospital in Indore where treatment for skin, kidney, and cardiac problems is provided by a team of world-class doctors. Sometimes unprotected intercourse can cause UTI and even sexually transmitted skin infections like syphilis and scabies, which can affect the individual health. Encountering any kidney and skincare problems? Consult with the expert urologist and best dermatologist in Indore at Vishesh Jupiter Hospital.