Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Treatment Doctor Q&A
Urinary tract infections or UTI’s are fairly common infections and are much more common in women than in men. These infections can affect the bladder, urethra, or kidneys. They are most often treated with antibiotics but these are not always necessary. Our doctors at Medallus Urgent Care offer comprehensive treatment for urinary tract infections. For more information, contact us or see our business hours online. We serve patients from Jamestown, ND and surrounding areas.
Table of Contents:
Urinary tract infections happen when bacteria gets into the urinary tract through the urethra and the bacteria multiplies causing an infection. The urinary system is designed to keep bacteria out but sometimes that fails.
The most common UTIs will affect women in the bladder and urethra.
The bladder infection is the most common UTI and is usually caused by E.Coli bacteria. E.Coli is found in the gastrointestinal tract. Sexual intercourse can be a means for bacteria to enter the urinary tract as well. Women’s anatomy is also part of the problem because of the short distance between the urethra and anus and the shortness of the urethra.
An infection of the urethra is also caused by gastrointestinal bacteria.
UTIs don’t always have signs and symptoms. When they do that can include:
– A strong and frequent need to urinate.
– A burning feeling when urinating.
– Frequent urination with small amounts of urine.
– Cloudy-looking urine.
– Urine that is bright pink, red or cola-colored, signs of blood in the urine.
– Strong smell from the urine.
– Women may have pelvic pain.
Antibiotics are the main treatment used for UTI’s. Which one that is prescribed will depend on the type of bacteria that is found in your urine and your health condition.
If you are dealing with a simple UTI infection the following drugs are most often prescribed:
– Trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole (Bactrim, Septra, and others)
– Fosfomycin (Monaural)
– Cephalexin (Keflex)
– Nitrofurantoin (Macrodantin, Macrobid)
Antibiotics known as fluoroquinolone aren’t usually recommended for simple UTIs. The risks outweigh the benefits in these cases. These can be prescribed in cases of kidney infection if nothing else is working.
UTI symptoms usually clear up a few days after starting treatment. The full course of antibiotics will need to be taken to fully get rid of the UTI.
You may also get a prescription for pain medication to relieve the burning sensation that comes with the infection.
If you are having frequent UTI’s you may need to have longer periods of antibiotic treatment which can last 6 months or longer. You may be prescribed a single dose of antibiotic after intercourse if it is related to sexual activity. If you are postmenopausal, then estrogen therapy may be prescribed.
If you are dealing with a severe UTI, intravenous antibiotics may be required.
Most UTI’s will last no longer than a week. This will depend on a few factors, whether it is uncomplicated or complicated, and your personal health issues. Uncomplicated UTIs are much more common than complicated UTIs. Uncomplicated UTIs are found in the lower urinary tract, such as the bladder and urethra, and don’t have complicating factors that make them difficult to treat.
How long an uncomplicated UTI will last depends on what you do to treat it. It is possible for your body to fight it off on its own. It can take between 3 to 7 days for your body to fight it off. If you are taking antibiotics to treat the UTI, you may see a reduction of symptoms in about 36 hours.
Complicated UTIs are more difficult and can last a couple of weeks. Complicated UTI’s will not go away on their own, you will need treatment. The course of antibiotics will usually last for 14 days. Any burning sensation that is a symptom of a complicated UTI will go away much sooner than that.
For more information, call us or book an online appointment. We serve patients from Jamestown ND, Valley City ND, Devils Lake ND, West Fargo ND, and Fargo ND.
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