Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary tract infections (UTIs or cystitis) are caused when the bladder becomes inflamed. They are most common in women; however, anyone can be affected by them. The most likely cause of the infection is from the bacteria Escherichia coli (E. coli), this bacteria comes from your own bowel and travels up your urethra to your bladder.

Symptoms include pain while passing urine, increase frequency passing urine, pain in your lower tummy (abdomen), and sometimes blood in your urine. For mild infections, these symptoms can self-resolve in 1 – 3 days. To help with mild symptoms ensure you drink enough water for your urine to be clear and take simple pain relief such as paracetamol and / or ibuprofen to ease discomfort.

If symptoms do not resolve, or if they worsen, you may need a course of antibiotics – please contact the health centre to make an appointment.
Occasionally UTIs can progress to pyleonephritis, this is when the kidneys become infected. Symptoms for this include lower back, flank pain, loin pain, fever, rigors (when the body feels
shivery).

These symptoms require urgent medical attention. Cranberry juice has long been considered a helpful remedy to prevent UTIs. Evidence based
research suggests there is no significant benefit to drinking cranberry juice, however, OCHC does not discourage trying it. If UTIs are a frequent issue for you, please contact the health centre as there are new treatment options available to consider.

If you are concerned you may have a UTI, OCHC recommend that you contact the health centre and ask to speak to a practice nurse. They can assist with triaging your symptoms and determine what treatment options would best suit you.

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