อาการ สาเหตุ และการรักษาโรคติดเชื้อในทางเดินปัสสาวะ - Urinary Tract Infections: Symptoms, Causes and Treatment

Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) stem from bacterial presence, most often from E. coli bacterial infection. These microorganisms ascend the urinary tract, starting from the urethra and progressing through the ureter

Share

Choose the content to read


Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) stem from bacterial presence, most often from E. coli bacterial infection. These microorganisms ascend the urinary tract, starting from the urethra and progressing through the ureter, leading to bladder and kidney infections.
Indications of UTIs

Symptoms of a Bladder Infection:

  • Pain in the abdomen, flank, and lower back regions.
  • The sensation of discomfort and pressure in the pelvic area.
  • Noticeable changes in urine characteristics, such as foul odor and cloudiness.
  • Increased frequency of urination, accompanied by a sudden and intense urge.
  • Loss of control over bladder function.
  • Burning sensation during urination.
  • Presence of blood in the urine.

In cases of burning urination, seeking consultation with a medical professional is imperative, which is particularly crucial for the conditions like yeast infections, urethritis, or bladder infections. Men may encounter pain in the pelvis and perineum.

Kidney Infection Symptoms:

If a kidney infection is present, all the previously mentioned symptoms may manifest, along with additional indicators like fever, flank pain, nausea, and vomiting.

When to see a doctor

Appropriate Timing for Medical Attention:
Seek prompt medical care if you have the above symptoms, especially those indicative of a kidney infection, given its potential to lead to severe complications.

Urgent medical attention is necessary if a urinary tract infection has accompanying fever, back pain, and vomiting.

Urinary Tract Infections Banner 2

Risk factors

Several risk factors contribute to UTI susceptibility:

  • Frequent sexual activities.
  • Presence of diabetes.
  • History of bladder or kidney infections within the past year.
  • Use of spermicide.
  • Being uncircumcised or participating in anal intercourse.

Complications

Delaying the treatment of UTIs can result in significant complications, including:

  • Recurrent infections are more likely in females. You may experience two or more UTIs within six months or three or more within a year.
  • Preterm delivery and low birth weight if there is a gestational UTI.
  • Permanent kidney damage.
  • Stenosis of the male urethra.
  • Sepsis -- a severe and potentially life-threatening immune response to infection.

Diagnosis

When doctors suspect a urinary tract infection (UTI), they rely on two main tests to figure it out.

  • Urinalysis: Check your urine for red or white blood cells and bacteria, which can suggest an infection.
  • Urine Culture: This test helps identify the specific bacteria causing the infection. It's important because different bacteria might need differing treatments. 
    Both urinalysis and urine culture are necessary for the following situations:
    • It's your first-time experiencing UTI symptoms.
    • The doctor thinks you might have a kidney infection.
    • You're having UTI symptoms with fever and pain in your prostate area.
    • You've had UTIs before that didn't respond well to treatment.
    • You've been taking antibiotics, but your symptoms haven't improved within a day or two.
    • You frequently get bladder infections.
    • You're pregnant.

If your symptoms don't get better with treatment or if there's a concern that something might be blocking your urinary tract, the doctor might order additional tests, such as:

  • Ultrasound: Uses sound waves to create images of your urinary tract. It helps the doctor see if there are any blockages or other issues.
  • Computed Tomography (CT) Scan: Gives the doctor more detailed, cross-sectional images of your urinary tract.
  • Cystoscopy: In this procedure, a tiny camera is inserted into your urethra to look inside your bladder. It helps the doctor directly visualize any abnormality causing your symptoms.

Treatment

Antibiotics

Mild urinary tract infections can sometimes resolve by themselves, but you need antibiotics most of the time, especially when you have a fever, chills, nausea, and vomiting. There are different kinds of antibiotics, such as:

  • Amoxicillin
  • Cephalosporins
  • Doxycycline
  • Fosfomycin
  • Nitrofurantoin
  • Quinolones

Your doctor may advise you to take antibiotics every day, every other day, after sexual intercourse, or at the first sign of symptoms. Your symptoms can improve within a couple of days. It is essential to complete the course of antibiotics as directed by your doctor even after you feel better and experience no symptoms to prevent antibiotic resistance. If you have frequent UTIs, your doctor may recommend taking prophylactic low-dose antibiotics for some time to reduce the likelihood of recurrence.

Prevention

  • Maintain proper hygiene

Women have a shorter urethra than men, allowing bacteria such as E. coli to enter the urinary tract more easily. To prevent UTI, after a bowel movement, always wipe from front to back to prevent the spread of bacteria from the rectum to the urethra. During menstruation, regularly change your pads and tampons to maintain cleanliness. Avoid vaginal douching, which can disrupt the natural balance of bacterial flora and increase the risk of infection.

  • Drink 6-8 glasses of water

Drink adequate water. Drinking plenty of water can help remove bacteria from your urinary tract more often to prevent its build-up.

  • Urinate before and after sexual intercourse.

Emptying your bladder is a way to eliminate waste products and bacteria from your body. It can lower the risk of developing UTIs. Urinating right after sexual activities can flush out bacteria that may enter your urethra. If you cannot urinate, wash your genitals with clean water.

  • Avoid spermicide and diaphragm.

These types of birth control can increase the risks of developing UTIs in some people.

Urinary Tract Infections Infographic En

Article by

Published: 14 Aug 2023

Share

Related Doctors

  • Link to doctor
    Dr Vichai  Hongpaitoon

    Dr Vichai Hongpaitoon

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Viroon  Donavanik,MD,FACR

    Dr Viroon Donavanik,MD,FACR

    • Surgery
    • Radiation Oncology
    • Urology
    Prostate Cancer, Prostate Brachytherapy
  • Link to doctor
    Assoc.Prof.Dr Sittiporn Srinualnad

    Assoc.Prof.Dr Sittiporn Srinualnad

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Tanet Thaidumrong

    Dr Tanet Thaidumrong

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    MedPark Hospital Logo

    Prof. Dr Kittinut Kijvikai

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Vichai Charoenwongse

    Dr Vichai Charoenwongse

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Vasun Setthawong

    Dr Vasun Setthawong

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Akanae Wongsawat

    Dr Akanae Wongsawat

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Living and Deceased Donor Kidney Transplant, Minimally Invasive Urological Surgery, Endoscopic Urological Surgery, Urinary Tract Stone Surgery, Erectile Dysfunction Treatment, Aging Male
  • Link to doctor
    Asst. Prof. Dr Sarayuth Viriyasiripong

    Asst. Prof. Dr Sarayuth Viriyasiripong

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Sonthidetch Sivilaikul

    Dr Sonthidetch Sivilaikul

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology, Neuro Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Supachai Sathidmangkang

    Dr Supachai Sathidmangkang

    • Urology
    • Urology
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Paibul Boonyapanichskul

    Dr Paibul Boonyapanichskul

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Urology, Genito-Urinary
  • Link to doctor
    Dr Apirak Santi-ngamkun

    Dr Apirak Santi-ngamkun

    • Surgery
    • Urology
    Voiding Dysfunction, Laparoscopic Urologic Surgery