Urinary Tract Infection (cont.)
Jerry R. Balentine, DO, FACEP
Dr. Balentine received his undergraduate degree from McDaniel College in Westminster, Maryland. He attended medical school at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine graduating in1983. He completed his internship at St. Joseph's Hospital in Philadelphia and his Emergency Medicine residency at Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center in the Bronx, where he served as chief resident.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- What is a urinary tract infection (UTI)?
- What causes a urinary tract infection?
- Are urinary tract infections contagious?
- What are urinary tract infection symptoms and signs?
- When should people seek medical care for a UTI?
- How do physicians diagnose a urinary tract infection?
- What kinds of doctors treat urinary tract infections?
- Are there home remedies for a urinary tract infection?
- What is the treatment for a urinary tract infection?
- What follow-up is needed for a urinary tract infection?
- Is it possible to prevent a urinary tract infection?
- What is the prognosis of a urinary tract infection?
- Take the UTI Quiz
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) - Slideshow
- Urinary Incontinence in Women - Slideshow
- Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) in Adults FAQs
What are urinary tract infection symptoms and signs?
Lower urinary tract infection
- Bladder (cystitis): The lining of the urethra and bladder becomes inflamed and irritated.
- Dysuria: pain or burning during urination
- Frequency: more frequent urination (or waking up at night to urinate, sometimes referred to as nocturia); often with only a small amount of urine
- Urinary urgency: the sensation of having to urinate urgently
- Cloudy, bad-smelling, or bloody urine
- Lower abdominal pain or pelvic pressure or pain
- Mild fever (less than 101 F), chills, and "just not feeling well" (malaise)
- Urethra (urethritis): Burning with urination
Upper urinary tract infection (pyelonephritis)
Symptoms develop rapidly and may or may not include the symptoms for a lower urinary tract infection.
- Fairly high fever (higher than 101 F)
- Shaking chills
- Flank pain: pain in the back or side, usually on only one side at about waist level
In newborns, infants, children, and elderly people, the classic symptoms of a urinary tract infection may not be present. Other symptoms may indicate a urinary tract infection.
- Newborns: fever or hypothermia (low temperature), poor feeding, jaundice
- Infants: vomiting, diarrhea, fever, poor feeding, not thriving
- Children: irritability, eating poorly, unexplained fever that doesn't go away, loss of bowel control, loose bowels, change in urination pattern
- Elderly people: fever or hypothermia, poor appetite, lethargy, change in mental status
Pregnant women are at increased risk for an UTI. Typically, pregnant women do not have unusual or unique symptoms. If a woman is pregnant, her urine should be checked during prenatal visits because an unrecognized infection can cause pregnancy complications.
Although most people have symptoms with a urinary tract infection, some do not.
The symptoms of urinary tract infection can resemble those of sexually transmitted diseases.
Find out what women really need.