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Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)

                                          

A UTI usually occurs when bacteria enters the opening of the urethra and multiply in the urinary tract. The urinary tract includes the kidneys, the tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder (ureters), bladder, and the tube that carries urine from the bladder (urethra).

Symptoms

  • Pain or burning when you urinate
  • Feeling as though you need to urinate often, but not much urine comes out when you do
  • Lower abdomen feels tender or heavy 
  • Pain on one side of your back, under your ribs
  • Fever and chills
  • Nausea and vomiting

When to Seek Treatment

Treatment usually involves antibiotics and hydration (drinking more water). Oral antibiotics are used for three days to treat straightforward bladder infections. Treatment may be extended in complex cases.

Often taking Azo-Standard or Pyridium will help with the burning sensation when urinating. If there appears to be an obstruction, a catheter to drain the bladder may be needed.

If your UTI does not improve after antibiotics, you will need further evaluation and additional treatment. If the infection spreads and affects kidney function or causes widespread infection, you may need a hospital stay.

If you are concerned by abnormal symptoms or are experiencing pain associated with a urinary tract infection, contact our office or your primary care doctor to set up an appointment as soon as possible.

Types of UTIs

Urethritis

Urethritis is the result of bacteria spreading inside of the urethra or urethral tissue. The infected area may be very painful and if not treated right away, the infection could spread to the kidneys or the bladder. There are several types of infections that lead to urethritis.

Bacterial Vaginosis (BV)

Another common type of urethritis is the Bacterial Vaginosis (BV). This infection is caused by an overgrowth of healthy bacteria in the vagina. BV is known to cause several problems in women. One problem is the development of pelvic inflammatory disease, which is a condition that involves an inflammation of the vagina and inflammation of the vulva.

Untreated BV may cause the development of scars on the genitals. Moreover, the scarring could lead to bacterial regrowth or even certain cancers. Infected tissues could be painful in nature and there could be swelling of the vulva.

Bladder Infection (Cystitis)

There are many symptoms of a cystitis, or bladder infection. The most common symptoms are burning and pain in the abdomen when going to the bathroom. Another common symptom is a feeling of incomplete emptying, a frequent urge to use the toilet, or the feeling of having to use the restroom many more times throughout the day that you may actually need to.

Other symptoms of bladder infection can include:

  • Pain and swelling in the rectum and bowels that can be described as stabbing, severe, persistent, or unbearable.
  • The urge to go to the bathroom with the inability to actually go.
  • These symptoms may be very similar to those of someone with constipation problems.
  • Bloating or stomach-ache.

Kidney Infection (Pyelonephritis)

A kidney infection is a serious condition that can cause damage to the kidneys and bladder. Symptoms vary from person to person but can include frequent urination, fever, chills, and pain in the back, side, and groin.

This condition requires a diagnosis. Left untreated, pyelonephritis can lead to kidney failure or other complications. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, please do not hesitate to contact Northwest Arkansas Urology Associates to schedule an appointment.

Vaginitis

Vaginitis is common in women, regardless of age. It occurs when the walls of the vagina become irritated as a result of an infection or a change in the balance of healthy bacteria. Symptoms can include itching, pain, and discharge.