The urine is normally sterile. An infection occurs when bacteria get into the urine and begin to grow. The infection usually starts at the opening of the urethra where the urine leaves the body and moves upward into the urinary tract. Common symptoms of a UTI include:
• burning or scalding sensation or lower abdominal discomfort when passing urine
• passing urine much more frequently than usual
• feeling an urge to urinate, but being unable to, or only passing a few drops
• feeling the bladder is still full after urination
• foul smelling urine
• urine that is cloudy, bloody or dark
HOW IS UTI DIAGNOSED?
A General Physician/Urologist diagnoses UTI by performing a physical examination to determine whether it is lower UTI or upper UTI. Additional tests for UTI include ultrasound, intravenous pyelogram and cystoscopy.
HOW IS UTI TREATED?
Antibiotics usually are the first line treatment for urinary tract infections. Which drugs are prescribed and for how long depend on health condition and the type of bacteria found in the urine. The doctor may also prescribe a pain medication (analgesic) that numbs the bladder and urethra to relieve burning while urinating, but pain usually is relieved soon after starting an antibiotic.
DID YOU KNOW?
Young children: Young children have trouble wiping themselves and washing their hands well after a bowel movement. Poor hygiene has been linked to an increased frequency of urinary tract infections. Children of all ages: Urinary tract infection in children can be (but is not always) a sign of an abnormality in the urinary tract, usually a partial blockage. An example is a condition in which urine moves backward from the bladder up the ureters (vesicoureteral reflux).