Urinary Tract Infections

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs)Urinary tract infections, or UTIs, are highly common infections which occur when bacteria enters and grows inside part of the urinary tract, which includes the urethra, bladder, ureters, and kidneys. In many cases, the bacteria causing a UTI came from the vagina or anus, and this occurs particularly often in women due to the location and short length of the urethra. Most UTIs begin in the lower urinary tract (the bladder and urethra), but if the infection isn’t treated promptly and appropriately, it can spread to the upper urinary tract as well (the ureters and kidneys), which can lead to more serious complications.

There are a variety of potential causes for urinary tract infections. Women often develop UTIs from sexual activity, but the infection can also arise when the bladder does not empty completely due to a blockage or narrowing in the urinary tract. Symptoms often include a sharp pain or burning during urination, a frequent and urgent need to urinate, and soreness in the lower abdomen, back, or side, as well as urine with a strong odor, cloudy color, or small amounts of blood.

 

Urinary Tract Infection Treatment

If you are experiencing symptoms of a UTI, it’s important to schedule an appointment at Gynecology of Gwinnett in order to receive an accurate diagnosis and effective treatment, because other conditions can cause similar symptoms. We will diagnose a urinary tract infection through a simple test called a urinalysis. In some cases, we may also perform a culture of the sample or test it with certain antibodies in order to find out more information about the specific types of bacteria present.

Fortunately, treatment for a UTI is rather straightforward – a course of oral antibiotics can typically resolve the infection within a week or so. While symptoms may disappear after one to two days, it’s important to finish all the antibiotics you were prescribed to prevent the infection from lingering on and either recurring or worsening. It’s also crucial not to self-diagnose or to take antibiotics from another person’s prescription or even from your own past infection, because a number of variables are considered to determine the specific type of antibiotic you should be prescribed.

 

Urinary Tract Infection FAQs

Is there any way to prevent urinary tract infections?
UTIs may not be 100% preventable, but there are some steps you can take to minimize your risk:

  • Always wipe from front to back (not back to front) after using the restroom.
  • Keep the skin clean around the genital and anal area.
  • Avoid using douches, powders, and deodorant sprays in the genital area.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Avoid holding in urine and fighting the urge to urinate.
  • Try to empty your bladder before and after sex.
  • Wear underwear with a cotton crotch.
  • Avoid using spermicides or diaphragms and use other birth control methods instead

 

What complications can arise from a urinary tract infection?
While UTIs are a rather minor health concern and can typically be cured quickly and easily, it’s important not to delay seeing your doctor at Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett. If left untreated, a UTI can spread to the upper urinary tract and cause a kidney infection, which could lead to long-term kidney damage and can even be life-threatening. It’s best to schedule an appointment as soon as you notice UTI symptoms, but seek urgent medical care if you experience back pain, chills, fever, nausea, or vomiting, as these can be symptoms of a kidney infection.

 

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Gynecology Associates of Gwinnett
601 Professional Drive, Suite 330
Lawrenceville, Georgia 30046   
Phone: 678.380.1980   
Fax: 678.380.7348

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Monday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Tuesday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Wednesday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Thursday 8:30AM–4:30PM
Friday 8:30AM–12PM
Saturday Closed
Sunday Closed

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