Signs And Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infection In Women and Men

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The symptoms of a lower urinary tract infection include burning sensation while peeing, frequent urge to pee, pain in lower abdomen, and cloudy or bloody urine. Upper urinary tract infection symptoms include high fever, shiver and chills, nausea and vomiting, back and side pain, and confusion. You should seek medical attention as soon as you notice the symptoms of an upper UTI.

Infections of the upper urinary tract (kidneys and ureters) are much more severe than those of the lower urinary tract (bladder and urethra). Their symptoms differ as well.1

Symptoms Of Lower Urinary Tract Infection

Recognizing the symptoms of lower UTIs (urethritis and cystitis) will help you take some action to treat the condition. Though lower UTIs are not very severe, neglecting them may eventually lead to serious upper UTIs.2

  • Pain or burning sensation while peeing
  • A frequent urge to pee
  • The need of emptying your bladder immediately after peeing
  • Foul-smelling, cloudy urine or bloody urine
  • Pain in lower abdomen
  • Feeling of not being able to fully empty out bladder
  • Feeling tired or unwell

Symptoms Of Upper Urinary Tract Infection

Upper urinary tract infections are much more severe than lower UTIs. If you experience the following symptoms then you may be suffering from acute pyelonephritis.3

  • A high fever of 100.4ºF and above
  • Shiver and chills
  • Side or back pain
  • Confusion
  • Restlessness
  • Being and feeling sick
  • Nausea and vomiting

When Should You Consult A Doctor?

You should consult a medical professional if you notice any of the symptoms of a lower UTI, which persist for more than 2 days. You need immediate medical help if you experience painful urination accompanied by fever and chills, nausea and vomiting, and severe pain in the abdomen and the sides. 4 Your infection may have become severe and your doctor will be able to suggest antibiotics to treat your condition.

Don’t hesitate to reach for help if you are pregnant and you experience even mild symptoms of a lower UTI.5 During pregnancy, the hormone progesterone induces changes in your urinary system making it easier for microbes to enter through the urethra. The microbes can even reach the kidneys because of the dilation of the ureters.6 The growing size of the baby also prevents your bladder from emptying fully.7 All pregnant women should be screened for UTIs regularly to prevent unnecessary complications, such as neonatal sepsis and preterm labor.8

References   [ + ]

1, 2, 3, 4.Urinary tract infections in adults. National Health Service.
5.Cystitis – Treatment. National Health Service.
6.Loh, Keng Yin, and Nalliah Sivalingam. Urinary tract infections in pregnancy. Malaysian family physician: the official journal of the Academy of Family Physicians of Malaysia2007.
7.Matuszkiewicz-Rowińska, Joanna, Jolanta Małyszko, and Monika Wieliczko. Urinary tract infections in pregnancy: old and new unresolved diagnostic and therapeutic problems. Arch Med Sci2015.
8.Ovalle, Alfredo, and Marco Levancini. Urinary tract infections in pregnancy. Current opinion in urology2001.

Disclaimer: The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.

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