Urinary tract infections (UTI) means an infection in the urinary system. It can be in kidneys, bladder, ureters or urethra. Urinary tract infections mostly occurs in the lower part of the urinary tract which involves urethra and bladder.
Women has greater rish of developing an urinary tact infection than men. Lower urinary tract infections can be painful but it will cause more serious consequences when spreads to kidneys.
Urinary tract infections mostly treat with antibiotics. Also there is supportive treatments and symptomatic therapies for the urinary tract infections.
This symptoms may be seen on the patients with UTI:
- Abdominal pain
- Urinary Incontinence
- Loin pain
- Pungent odor in the urine
Urinary tract infections mostly occur because of entrance of bacteria in the urinary tract through the urethra and then to the bladder.
- E.Coli bacteria is a type of microorganism which is commonly found in the gastrointestinal system. Sometimes it can be easily goes in to the urinary tract mostly in women because of their anatomy.
- Because of female urogenital system anatomy, women are more likely to develop urinary tract infections.
- Sexual activity is also a risk factor for women to develop urinary tract infections.
- Diaphragms and spermicidal agents may be a risk factor for urinary tract infections.
- Menapause is a risk factor for urinary tract infection because of cessation of the estrogen release.
- Suppressed immune system can be a reason for the urinary tract infections.
- Blockages in the urinary tract such as tumors, kidney stones or prostate gland can be the reason for the UTI.
- Catheter use in patients who have neurological problems or who is paralyzed.
The first step is going to family physician, who takes the first place in the diagnosis of UTI in patients who show signs of UTI. You may be examined at Internal Medicine outpatient clinic to evaluate your complaints in detail and to see if they depends UTI or other similar diseases. For further tests, you can contact the Gynecology clinic which is for women reproductive system diseases. Also for all the urinary tract infections and diseases you can go Urology outpatient clinics.
Tests that can be asked to diagnose urinary tract infections include:
- Blood tests
- A Complete Blood Count (CBC) test shows the number and size of blood cells. It is very valuable because there are some blood cells which increase or decrease during an active infection.
- Urine Sample
- USG and MRI can be used for the closer look to the urinary tract and urinary system organs.
- XR direct radiography CT can be also used for the imagination.
- Cystoscopy : looking inside the urinary tract till bladder via a thin flexible tube with a camera
- Antibiotics are the most commonly used way to treat urinary tract infections. Antibiotics must be prescribed by the doctor because they need to be used when they are needed.
- Drinking water is also a need because dehydration seen in the patients with infections also water will help the flush the bacteria out of your urinary tract.
- Also there will be prescribed symptomatic drugs like pain killers for analgesia if needed.
- Cranberry is commonly suggested to prevent or treat urinary tract infections. Cranberries contain a tannin especially prevents E.coli infections.
- Be sure to have a healthy balanced diet to keep the immune system strong. Immune system has a key role to prevent all kind of infections in the body.
What is the best thing to do for a urinary tract infection?
- Drink more water. Water will help to keep your body hydrated and also helps the flush out the bacteria from your urinary tract.
- Go to a doctor. Prescribed medicines like antibiotics will treat the UTI in 3-7 days.
- Cranberries and cranberry juices will help to prevent infections.
- Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/urinary-tract-infection/symptoms-causes/syc-20353447
- Management of Urinary Tract Infections in Adults Walter E. Stamm, and Thomas M. Hooton N Engl J Med 1993; 329:1328-1334 DOI: 10.1056/NEJM199310283291808