This article will help you understand more about Urinary Tract Infections UTI. How does it appear, what produces it, how to diagnose and treat it – in this article we will answer to all these questions that have upset you if you have ever dealt with such a situation.
What should you know about Urinary Tract Infections UTI
The Urinary Tract Infections UTI are produced by various microorganisms that manage to reach the urinary tract. Here, they multiply and cause changes in the normal operation of the kidneys and urinary tract.
The urinary infection is a recurrent disease – it can affect you periodically throughout life, although you treat it correctly and manage to get rid of the infection.
However, if the urinary tract infection reappears, it must be treated seriously and in an appropriate way.
The urinary tract infections UTI affect:
- The lower urinary tract: urethra ( the infection is called urethritis), bladder (cystitis);
- The upper urinary tract: ureters, kidneys (the infections are called nephritis, pyelonephritis, glomerulonephritis)
There are also other diseases which appear in the upper urinary tract, characterized by infectious processes that occur as complications of Urinary Tract Infections UTI.
How do Urinary Tract Infections UTI develop?
Firstly, it is important to mention that urinary infections are more common in the case of women than in the case of men. Men can be also exposed to such infections, especially during their childhood (infants or babies) or when they get older, usually being associated with renal abnormalities, anatomical changes in the urinary tract or because of surgical maneuvers that can cause the infection through the use of an inappropriate instrument.
Women can frequently be affected by Urinary Tract Infections UTI, without having any other health problems. This is because the urethra of women is very short compared to that of men.
Moreover, the urethral opening is next to the vagina and the anal one, thus the presence of bacteria and fungi in these areas enables the passage of microorganisms into the urethra. Sometimes, this transition is done quite easily, especially since bacteria possess the ability to move (such as Proteus).
Pathogens (bacteria, fungi) can enter the urinary tract:
- Upward: from the urethra into the bladder (e.g.: during intercourse); from the bladder to the kidneys;
- By blood: the pathogens can appear into the blood from another infection in the body and reach the kidneys, action which can cause an infection.
- Directly: through the instruments used in a medical procedure, even if the materials used were rigorous sterilized; or because of precarious hygiene.
What causes the urinary infections?
The most common pathogens found in Urinary Tract Infections UTI are usually enteric bacteria like bacilli (bacteria that naturally exist in the intestinal tract of man and animals, found in faeces, widespread in nature, especially on the ground).
Here are some examples of such bacteria: Esccherichia coli, Proteus, Klebsiella, Pseudomonas (also called Piocianic). Other pathogens that can cause Urinary Tract Infections UTI are: Stretococci, enterococci, staphylococci, yeasts, Candida.
What favours the appearance of Urinary Tract Infections UTI?
As we have mentioned previously, the fact that the urethra of women is short and located next to the vagina and anus is already a cause which favours the appearance of such infections.
Also, in cases of colitis, chronic constipation or biliary disorders – the urinary infections frequently appear.
Situations that favor the frequent occurrence of Urinary Tract Infections UTI:
- Kidney stones;
- Urine evacuation disorders: spasms, urinary stasis common during pregnancy, urinary tract obstacles ( e.g.: tumor compression on the ureters)
- Genital infections.
How to diagnose the urinary tract infection UTI?
Although there are many symptoms of this disease that lead to the medical diagnosis of UTI, it is necessary to accurately determine the germ which caused the infection by doing some tests.
The manifestations of the affection differ, depending on the location of the urinary infection, but we can offer you some guidelines.
The general UTI symptoms are represented by:
- Frequent urge to urinate, although the bladder may have been emptied recently;
- Burning pain when urinating;
- Cloudy urine (sometimes bloody urine);
- Chills, sometimes fever;
- Back pain;
- Nausea and vomiting.
What happens if you do not consult a doctor and don’t treat correctly this infection?
There can appear complications, some of them being very serious: renal abscesses, generalized infections, permanent kidney failure and compromised renal function.
How to treat Urinary Tract Infections UTI?
You must consult a doctor, no matter what your symptoms are. In the case of less complicated Urinary Tract Infections UTI such as cystitis, besides medical treatment, hydration helps you get rid of the bacteria and speeds up the process of healing.
Never ignore the signals your body gives you and always ask the specialist’s advice. You should not ignore Urinary Tract Infections UTI.