You Feel Like You Caught A Stomach Bug
If UTIs arent caught in time, they can spread and cause a kidney infection, which is the leading cause of approximately 100,000 hospital visits each year in the U.S., reports the NIDDK. When that happens, Dr. Long Gillespie says the symptoms are more widespread. You could experience everything from a fever and chills to an achy back, nausea, and vomiting all common signs of the stomach flu. But when these symptoms are combined with pelvic discomfort, as well as frequent and painful urination, its a likely indicator that the diagnosis will be a UTI, and your doctor can get you started on antibiotics right away.
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Relief Without A Prescription
An over-the-counter drug called phenazopyridine can help ease your pain, burning, and irritation. It also controls your need to pee frequently and urgently.
But there’s a catch. It only works on your symptoms. It doesn’t cure your infection. You still need to see your doctor to make sure you get treatment to fight the bacteria that’s causing your UTI.
Also, one common side effect: It turns your pee dark red or orange while you take it.
What Is Kidney Infection Back Pain
Lifestyle choices can also contribute to lower back pain, including:
- Long periods of immobility
However, if you are experiencing lower back pain along with frequent urination, blood in the urine, fever, or chills, you may have a kidney infectionback pain. This is a condition where the cause of the back pain is a kidney infection, also known as Pyelonephritis.
Under normal conditions, the urinary tract works as part of the system that cleans the blood. The kidneys are capable of filtering 150 quarts of water and waste from the blood each day. The filtering process produces one to two quarts of urine which are stored in the bladder until removed through urination.
To avoid potentially serious complications, an infection of the kidneys should receive immediate medical attention.
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What Are The Symptoms Of A Uti
Those who have had a urinary tract infection will tell you that theyre not a pleasant experience. Even though theyre common and very treatable, UTIs can be painful and frustrating, especially if they reoccur often.
Symptoms of a UTI can include:
- pain in your lower back or side
- pain, stinging or burning when you urinate
- feeling like you need to urinate more often than normal, but only passing a few drops
- cloudy urine
- urine that smells unusual and
- blood in your urine.
If a UTI has spread to your kidneys you might also experience fever, back pain, abdominal pain, diarrhoea and vomiting.
What Should You Take For Uti Pain
UTIs are best treated with antibiotics prescribed by a doctor. However, there are some preventative and comfort measures you can do at home to alleviate UTI pain while you wait for antibiotics to kick in.
Drinking liberal amounts of fluids daily will flush out the bacteria. It may be helpful to drink pure cranberry juice because it contains an ingredient called A-type proanthocyanidins that can prevent bacteria from sticking to the bladder wall.
It is best to avoid coffee, tea, colas, alcohol, and other fluids that are known to irritate the urinary system.
Taking a vitamin C supplement may also help with UTIs because it makes your urine more acidic.
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Who’s Most Likely To Get A Kidney Infection
Women and children are most at risk of developing a kidney infection, as well as other urinary tract infections such as cystitis.
In women, the urethra is closer to the anus than in men, making it easier for bacteria from the anus to enter the urethra accidentally. The female urethra is also much shorter than the male urethra . This makes it easier for bacteria to reach the bladder and move into the kidneys.
Other factors can also put you more at risk of developing a kidney infection, including:
A Back Pain You Cant Ignore
An upper UTI can cause intense back pain as the infection reaches the kidneys. People will get pain in the lower back and groin area. Back pain comes with two other symptoms: high fever and vomiting. Upper infections happen when a lower UTI goes unchecked or does not respond to antibiotics. These infections are serious and, in severe cases, need hospitalization. If not managed well, the infection can spread to the renal artery and blood, which is life-threatening.
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When To See A Gp
See a GP if you feel feverish and have pain that will not go away in your tummy, lower back or genitals.
Contact a GP immediately if you think your child may have a kidney infection.
If you cannot get a GP appointment and need urgent medical attention, go to your nearest urgent care centre .
If you do not have a local UCC, go to your nearest A& E.
Treatments For Kidney Infection
Antibiotics are used to treat kidney infections, usually in the form of a pill taken orally over the course of several weeks. Bacteria may be resistant to some forms of antibiotics, so your doctor may need to take a blood and urine sample to determine which antibiotic to prescribe.
In severe cases, you may need to receive the antibiotics through an IV.
If the infection returns, a second course of treatment up to six weeks may be required.
Kidney infections treated with antibiotics rarely result in complications.
If your urinary tract is blocked by an enlarged prostate or kidney stones, you may need to undergo a procedure or have a surgery to clear the blockage.
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Bacteria Hide In Your Bladder Lining
One interesting fact from Dr. Hawes: during bladder cystoscopy of chronic UTI patients she frequently sees pimples on their bladder surface. The correct medical term is Cystitis cystica, which is a benign lesion of the bladder as a result of chronic inflammation.
These pimples are thought to be caused by chronic irritation of the urothelium because of infection, calculi, obstruction, or tumor.
Per Dr. Hawes, a biopsy of these pimples typically comes back with results of bacterial contamination. Basically, bacteria comfortably reside inside of these pimples on a bladder wall. The worst thing, they can reappear from time to time to cause yet another infection. Thats why you notice that UTI symptoms come back after antibiotics.
If thats the case, Dr. Hawes identifies the type of bacteria via a culture test and which antibiotic bacteria are susceptive to. After that, she combines short-term intensive antibiotic therapy with long-term low dose antibiotics. This normally kills bacteria that keep reappearing out of the cysts into your bladder.
Many thanks to Dr. Lisa Hawes who took the time off her weekend to share these insights. We hope this information will help you when discussing a treatment plan with your urologist. And if you are happened to be in Maryland, here is the contact information for Dr. Hawes practice.
Discuss With Your Doctor If Some Of Your Uti Symptoms Persist After Antibiotics
Here are several questions that you should think about prior to your doctor visit to help your physician with the right information:
- Are your symptoms stronger when the bladder is full and you feel better after urination?
- Does a certain position trigger bladder pain?
- Do you feel that your symptoms stay the same over the course of days and even weeks?
- Is there blood in your urine, foul smell, or is your urine cloudy?
- If youd like more help on how to discuss your UTI with your provider and how to make the most out of your patient-doctor relationships, check out my Actionable Guide here.
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Option #: After Antibiotics Uti Symptoms Still Linger Maybe Its Not A Uti
Unfortunately, this scenario happens way too often: you have had many well-diagnosed UTIs in the past, so when you complained of UTI-like symptoms, your doctor prescribed you antibiotics right away.
Sometimes, after you take antibiotics you could even feel better but then you notice that some symptoms still remained. This could be confusing, especially if antibiotics did bring you a slight relief.
Per Dr. Hawes, if you never had blood in your urine, cloudy urine, or funny smelling urine in the first place, if your only symptoms were bladder pain and slight burning with urination, then chances are high that it was not a UTI.
As Dr. Lisa Hawes explains After multiple UTIs, the bladder lining is damaged and inflamed. When the protective GAG bladder layer is damaged, the acidic urine can easily irritate the bladder and cause pain.
If you noticed that drinking lots of water help with your condition, it is because you are simply diluting the urine and making it less irritating to your bladder walls.
Medications and supplements that help to coat the lining of the bladder could greatly reduce these symptoms.
Your Pee Looks Like Pink Lemonade Or Tea
Discolored, cloudy urine often accompanies the strong smell of a UTI, Ross says. Normal pee should look clear or light yellow, similar to lemonade. Pee that looks pink or brown might mean theres bacteria or even a little blood mixed in with your urine. After all, many infections in your urinary tract can cause irritation and bleeding.
3. Your Pee Is Cloudy
You might also notice that your urine looks cloudy, says Sarah Yamaguchi, an LA-based gynecologist at DTLA Gynecology. Overall, experts point out that urine that *just doesnt look right* definitely warrants a trip to the doctor. A urine test will be able to alert your doc to any infections.
Causes Of Kidney Infection
Normally, the urinary tract keeps out bacteria. On occasion, however, bacteria can enter the urethra and continue up into the bladder causing inflammation, urinary tract infection, and an infection of the kidneys.
It is also possible for blood to transmit a virus or bacteria to the kidneys from other parts of the body.
For around every 30 cases of urinary tract infection, one results in a kidney infection.
Urinary tract infections are more likely to occur in older people or those with other medical conditions such as:
- Infected bladder
Risk Factors In Women
Women are particularly susceptible to urinary tract infections because their urethra is shorter, meaning the infection can spread throughout the urinary tract more easily. Additionally, the anal and urinary openings of a woman are in closer proximity, increasing the risk of bacteria spreading between the two.
In addition to the above, women are also susceptible to the following risk factors for UTIs:
- Sexual intercourse can contribute to the spread of genital or anal bacteria, especially with a new sexual partner when the rate of sexual activity is typically higher. However, UTIs are not a sexually transmitted disease
- Spermicides and birth control methods which use spermicides can affect the natural balance of healthy bacteria within the vagina
- Antibiotics can also alter the natural bacterial balance within the vagina
- Diaphragms can place pressure on a womanÃ¢â¬â¢s urethra, resulting in the possibility of the bladder not emptying properly
- Pregnancy. As the uterus grows in pregnancy, it can put added weight on the bladder, leading to the possibility of the bladder not emptying properly
- Menopause can cause hormonal changes which affect the vaginaÃ¢â¬â¢s natural bacterial balance
How Is Kidney Pain Treated
Treatment of kidney pain depends on what condition is causing it. In order to pinpoint a cause, a number of tools are available to help your doctor make a diagnosis:
- Urinalysis: Checks for the presence of blood, excess white blood cells , proteins, and certain chemicals that are linked to various kidney disorders.
- Imaging tests:Ultrasound or a CT scan provides an image of the physical structure of the kidneys and urinary tract, sees if stones are present, and helps determine if blood flow is adequate.
What Is Flank Pain
The flank is the area on the sides and back of your abdomen, between your lower ribs and your hips. Pain in this area is called flank pain. Several injuries, diseases and infections can cause pain in the flanks.
Flank pain can range from mild to severe. The pain can be sharp or a dull ache, and it may come and go. Its usually worse on one side, but it can occur on both flanks.
Problems in the kidney are common causes of flank pain. Back injuries also cause pain that starts in the spine and travels to the flanks. Healthcare providers treat the condition thats causing flank pain. Treatments include rest and medication.
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Changes In The Sensation Of Peeing
Dr. Sonpal tells Bustle there are two major symptoms to look out for when it comes to UTIs and pee â the first is a “burning feeling when you urinate,” and the second is a “frequent or intense urge to urinate, even though little comes out when you do.”
This burning sensation happens because UTIs cause the linings of our bladders and urethras to become inflamed and irritated, per the American Urological Foundation. This is one of the most common symptoms, and usually the first noticeable one, especially when coupled with the constant urge to pee â this is also caused by the irritation, which tricks your body into thinking your bladder is full even when it’s not. The AUA notes that this may also cause involuntary leaking of urine in some cases.
Other Home Remedies For Kidney Infections
To alleviate kidney infection pain in the lower back and abdomen areas, hot compresses can be used. Kidney infections can cause the surrounding muscles to spasm and become painful.
Heating pads can be used to increase blood flow to speed up healing with the increase levels of oxygen to the area from the blood cells. Heat therapy also stretches the soft tissues and decreases stiffness to allow the muscles in the area to relax. Feelings of pain and soreness will also be reduced, even if temporarily, as heat receptors in the body can block the effect of pain to be detected.
Although a bath of Epsom salt can detoxify your body and help rid any waster or bacteria, bubble baths are not recommended for those with a kidney infection. Frequent baths can remove the protective mucous covering the urethra and some chemicals present in soaps can also provide easy entry for the bacteria into the kidneys.
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How Common Is Flank Pain
Flank pain is very common. Nearly everyone gets flank pain at some point.
Kidney stones are one of the most common causes of flank pain. Every year in the United States, more than half a million people receive treatment for kidney stones. One in 10 people will get a kidney stone during their lifetime.
Can Kidney Infections Be Prevented
You can reduce your chances of developing a kidney infection by keeping your bladder and urethra free from bacteria. This can include drinking plenty of fluids, keeping your genitals clean and treating any constipation.
The symptoms of a kidney infection usually develop quite quickly over a few hours or days.
Common symptoms include:
- pain and discomfort in your side, lower back or around your genitals
- high temperature
- shivering or chills
- feeling very weak or tired
- loss of appetite
You may have other symptoms if you also have cystitis or urethritis . These additional symptoms may include:
- pain or a burning sensation during urination
- need to urinate frequently or urgently
- feeling that you’re unable to urinate fully
- blood in your urine
- cloudy or foul smelling urine
- pain in your lower abdomen
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Take The Signs Seriously
UTIs can happen at almost any age in women and at an elderly age in men. Researchers are still searching for the root cause. Until then, take preventative measures to reduce the chances of the condition. For people suspecting a UTI, seek help from a doctor. If the symptoms evolve into back pain, the kidneys are infected. At that point, get medical treatment immediately.
Can A Urinary Tract Infection Cause Lower Back Pain
The classic symptoms of a UTI are a frequent urge to urinate, especially at night, accompanied by a burning sensation when you do. Lower abdominal cramping and/or lower back pain also are associated with UTIs. The urine frequently has a strong smell, looks cloudy or contains blood. Symptoms often depend on whether the infection is in the lower or upper urinary tract. If you have a fever and flank pain, that may be a sign that your kidneys are involved.
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The Causes Of Pain In Your Lower Right Abdomen
Youve got different organs and tissues in your tummy, all of which may be the cause of pain in your lower right abdomen from your gut to your kidneys, your tummy muscles and your reproductive organs.
Several conditions can affect your gut. Some, like constipation, are easy to treat with simple lifestyle changes, while more serious problems like appendicitis may need emergency treatment.
Here are some of the most common causes of pain in your lower right abdomen.