How Do You Know When A Uti Becomes A Kidney Infection
When you do not see a doctor, a urinary tract infection can swiftly turn into a kidney infection, which can be very serious to your long-term health.
Urinary tract infections are one of the most common types of infection, second only to respiratory infections. They account for over 8.3 million visits to hospitals and health care providers each year. An untreated UTI may lead to a kidney infection, this is a potentially life-threatening condition.
Why Does Uti Affect The Brain
These chemicals can also lead to many of the symptoms we feel, like fatigue or fevers. In older adults,the brain is more affected by the inflammation and the stress hormones that the body produces to fight the infection. The effects of this inflammation and stress on the brain are what show up as delirium.
How Do The Kidneys Become Infected
Acute kidney infections are typically caused by bacteria that has gotten into the urethra and traveled up through the bladder and ureters . Some medical conditions such as bladder dysfunction, bladder obstruction, neurogenic bladder or vesicoureteral reflux along with conditions that require the use of catheters can also increase the chances of kidney infection and damage.
You May Like: Can Kidney Stones Cause Constipation
Different Types Of Kidney Infections
You can generally classify kidney infections into 3 categories:
- Uncomplicated infections
- Chronic or recurring kidney infections.
Uncomplicated infections are simply those that start as urinary tract infections and spread, causing plenty of pain and discomfort but no long-term damage.
A complicated kidney infection is an infection accompanied by a condition that increases the potential for that infection to become severe and for treatments to become ineffective. This includes obstructions or abnormalities in the urinary system or disorders like diabetes. Complicated pyelonephritis also indicates more severe issues related to the kidneys. This includes the formation of abscesses or obstructions in the kidneys or even enlarged kidneys. Complicated kidney infections come with more severe symptoms and are often less responsive to treatments.
Chronic kidney infections are rare and often caused by birth defects, structural abnormalities, or other preexisting issues. Frequent kidney infections can cause scarring and progressive damage to the kidneys. Thankfully, most cases of chronic pyelonephritis are discovered early in childhood. Most cases of kidney infection are cured with traditional treatments and medications, with little lasting damage to the kidneys or urinary system. Most people wonât develop a kidney infection again.
Can Uti Cause A Stroke
Infections especially those in the urinary tract, known as UTIs may raise the risk of a stroke, a new study finds. Researchers examined the electronic medical records of more than 191,000 stroke patients to see if theyd been hospitalized or gone to an emergency room for an infection shortly before the stroke.
Recommended Reading: What Can You Do For Kidney Infection Pain
How Do Doctors Treat A Kidney Infection
Doctors treat most kidney infections with antibiotics . Doctors will often first prescribe an antibiotic that fights the most common types of kidney infection because it is very important to treat a kidney infection right away. Then, they may change the type of antibiotic after they get the results of your blood or urine tests.
Doctors will prescribe an antibiotic medicine based on:
- What type of bacteria is causing the infection
- How severe the infection is
- If you are you are pregnant
- If you are older than 65
- If you had problems from certain antibiotics in the past, such as allergic reactions
If you have a very serious infection, you may need to stay in the hospital to get antibiotics through an IV . You may also get medicine for pain.
If your kidney infection was caused by a problem with the shape of your urinary tract, you may need to have surgery to correct the problem and prevent future kidney infections.
How Long Until A Uti Infects Your Kidneys
Symptoms of a kidney infection usually appear two days after infection. Your symptoms may vary depending on your age.
Where do you have back pain with a urinary tract infection?
Back pain you cant ignore An upper UTI can cause severe back pain when the infection reaches the kidneys. People will have pain in the lower back and groin. Back pain is accompanied by two other symptoms: high fever and vomiting. Upper infections occur when a lower UTI is not controlled or does not respond to antibiotics.
Why do UTIs affect the brain?
When bacteria in urine travels through the bloodstream and crosses the blood-brain barrier, confusion and other cognitive difficulties can result.
What happens if you have had a UTI for too long?
The main danger associated with untreated UTIs is that the infection can spread from the bladder to one or both kidneys. When bacteria attack the kidneys, they can cause damage that will permanently reduce kidney function. In people who already have kidney problems, this can increase the risk of kidney failure.
Recommended Reading: Does Lemon Juice Help Kidney Stones
Causes Of Kidney Infection
Pyelonephritis is more common among women than men. Escherichia coli, a type of bacteria normally in the large intestine, causes about 90% of cases of pyelonephritis among people who are not hospitalized or living in a nursing home. Infections usually ascend from the genital area through the urethra to the bladder, up the ureters, into the kidneys. In a person with a healthy urinary tract, an infection is usually prevented from moving up the ureters into the kidneys by the flow of urine washing organisms out and by closure of the ureters at their entrance to the bladder. However, any physical blockage to the flow of urine, such as a structural abnormality, kidney stone, or an enlarged prostate gland, or the backflow of urine from the bladder into the ureters increases the likelihood of pyelonephritis.
The risk of pyelonephritis is increased during pregnancy. During pregnancy, the enlarging uterus puts pressure on the ureters, which partially obstructs the normal downward flow of urine. Pregnancy also increases the risk of reflux of urine up the ureters by causing the ureters to dilate and reducing the muscle contractions that propel urine down the ureters into the bladder. Occasionally, a catheter that remains in the bladder can cause pyelonephritis by allowing bacteria to enter or remain in the bladder.
Recommended Reading: Can A Kidney Infection Cause Diarrhea
What Happens If A Uti Reaches The Kidneys
When a UTI reaches the kidneys, it is called pyelonephritis.
There is still a chance that the urinary tract infection can be wiped out by antibiotics even after it reaches the kidneys. However, the treatment may now be for 14 days rather than seven, and if patients have a high temperature or are too dehydrated, then a hospital stay may be necessary to help them recover from the kidney infection. If so, the antibiotics will be given intravenously along with the fluid needed to replenish the body.
When UTI-causing bacteria reach the kidneys, it can cause permanent damage. Damage to the kidneys may result in reduced kidney function, or even complete kidney failure. The latter occurs more often if patients already have some type of kidney problem. From the kidneys, the infection can spread to the bloodstream, causing sepsis, and this may be life threatening.
Pyelonephritis is an acute or chronic infection of the kidneys. It causes a painful swelling of the kidneys and can deposit bacteria into the bloodstream. During this stage there will usually be blood in the urine, little urine leaving the body, and low blood pressure.
After pyelonephritis, the patient can develop urosepsis. This occurs when the UTI spreads its bacteria into the bloodstream and affects other parts of the body. This condition is serious.
Its symptoms include:
Read Also: What Helps When Your Kidneys Hurt
Symptoms Of Urinary Tract Infections
The symptoms of a basic urinary tract infection often include:
- Dark, cloudy urine that may appear red or pink from blood
- Painful or burning urination, a condition known as dysuria
- An urgent and frequent need to urinate
- A small amount of urine when you do go to the bathroom
- Urine that smells bad
- Confusion, particularly in more elderly patients
- More intense feelings of general illness
If you are experiencing symptoms of a kidney infection seek medical attention immediately. The sooner you receive treatment the more likely you are to prevent long term damage and recover faster.
Can A Kidney Infection Lead To A Urinary Tract Infection
A UTI, or urinary tract infection, occurs when bacteria enter any part of your urinary system, including the urethra, bladder, kidneys, or uterus. If not flushed out of the system, the bacteria can lead to an infection or UTI.
What happens when the urinary tract infection spreads to the kidneys?
If the infection spreads to the kidneys and gets worse, you may also have: lower back pain fever and chills nausea and vomiting
What happens if a kidney infection is not treated?
If left untreated, these UTIs can continue to spread up into your kidneys. A kidney infection can lead to serious complications, including kidney damage or a life-threatening condition called sepsis. In other words, kidney infections are usually the result of a less severe progression of a UTI due to lack of treatment.
What happens if you leave a UTI untreated?
Leaving a UTI untreated is not only painful, but can have serious consequences. When left alone, the bacteria quickly spread from the urinary tract to the kidneys. Fortunately, our network of certified doctors is available to diagnose your infection and prescribe antibiotics. PlushCare maintains a 97% patient satisfaction rate.
Don’t Miss: How To Diagnose Kidney Disease
How Should I Sleep With A Uti Pain
Use an incontinence pad or wear incontinence pants. These can lessen the concern of urinating in your sleep or give you the option of not getting out of bed to urinate. Use a hot water bottle or heating pad to warm your abdomen to minimize bladder discomfort or pressure. Completely empty your bladder before bed.
Preventing Urinary Tract Infections And Kidney Infections
Urinary tract infections and kidney infections can generally be prevented through similar means.
If you suffer from any symptoms of a urinary tract or kidney infection, talk to your doctor immediately. The faster you act, the more effective the treatment.
If you experience any symptoms of urinary tract infection or kidney infection, call or book online with PlushCare to set up a phone or video appointment with a top U.S. doctor today.
Read Also: Is Tomato Good For Kidney Stone Patient
What Is A Kidney Infection
A kidney infection, also called pyelonephritis, is when bacteria or viruses cause problems in one or both of your kidneys. Itâs a type of urinary tract infection .
Your kidneysâ main job is to remove waste and take extra water from your blood. Theyâre part of your urinary tract, which makes liquid waste and removes it from your body. Like the exhaust system on your car, you want everything to work like it should so waste moves in one direction only: out.
Your urinary tract is made up of your:
- Kidneys. These clean waste from your blood and make urine .
- Ureters. These thin tubes, one for each kidney, carry urine to your bladder.
- Bladder. This stores urine.
- Urethra. This tube carries urine from your bladder to outside your body.
If any of these parts gets germs in it, you can get a UTI. Most often, your bladder gets infected first. This can be painful but isnât usually serious.
But if the bad bacteria or viruses travel up your ureters, you can get a kidney infection. If left untreated, a kidney infection can cause life-threatening problems.
How Are Acute Kidney Infections Treated
Children are typically given oral antibiotics to take at home. However, if the infection is advanced, a child may receive intravenous antibiotics in the hospital. Staying well hydrated is an extremely important part of treatment, and children should drink plenty of fluids during and after treatment. There is evidence that good hydration during recovery may help reduce long-term kidney damage.
Don’t Miss: Can Too Many Eggs Cause Kidney Stones
How Do You Get Urinary Tract Infections
The design of the human body makes it so it isnt hard to get a bacterial UTI, because the infection comes from outside, through the urethra. Bacteria in the genital area can enter the urethra and the urinary tract, either because wiping after going to the bathroom, sexual activity, or unsanitary conditions. Once the bacteria have entered the urethra, the body tries fight them off, but sometimes the bacteria multiply and cause an infection.
In the case of a fungal infection, usually the fungus gets to the urinary tract through the blood stream. Those who develop this type of infection are usually ill with a disease that has compromised their immune system, such as AIDS.
What Is A Uti Anyway
A UTI, or urinary tract infection, happens when bacteria enters into any part of your urinary system, which includes the urethra, the bladder, the kidneys or the uterus. If not flushed out of the system, the bacteria can lead to an infection, or a UTI.
If youve ever had a UTI , you probably havent forgotten the symptoms. UTIs are very unpleasant, to say the least, and are often accompanied with one or more of the following:
A burning sensation when urinating
A strong urge to urinate often, usually passing only small amounts of urine at a time.
Cloudy and/or strong smelling urine
Read Also: Where Does Kidney Cancer Metastasis
Don’t Miss: Do Kidney Stones Affect Gfr
The Symptoms Of Cystitis
The usual symptoms of an infection of the urinary bladder:
- Burning or pain when passing urine
- A need to pass urine again and again, with very little urine passed
- Pressure or pain in your lower belly
- Urine that looks cloudy or reddish
- Urine with a bad smell
- Tiredness and feeling unwell, perhaps a low fever
What Can I Do To Help Prevent My Child From Getting A Kidney Infection
If you suspect your child has a UTI, get them prompt medical treatment to help prevent the UTI from turning into a kidney infection. Here are some tips for preventing UTIs.
While preventative antibiotics have been found to reduce the number of recurrent UTIs, there isnt any evidence that their use decreases the risk of kidney infection or scarring. Uncircumcised boys that are less than one year old are ten times more likely to get UTIs than circumcised boys, but by age two the risk decreases and circumcision does not have an effect on infection rates.
Read Also: Can Seltzer Water Cause Kidney Stones
Also Check: How To Detect Kidney Infection
What About Kidney Stones Are They Involved Here Somehow
Sort of. A kidney stone isnt an infection, but a collection of salt and minerals that hardens and turns into a stone. While some stones may be small others can be much larger. They may stay in the kidney, or begin to move into the ureter, the tube that connects the kidney and the bladder. When this happens, kidney stones can become extremely painful.
Kidney stones can be tricky, since they may have many of the same symptoms as a UTI or a kidney infection pain when urinating, needing to urinate often, and cloudy or strong smelling urine, blood in the urine, fever, nausea or vomiting. And while stones often pass on their own, larger stones sometimes need to be broken up, or removed.
Sometimes, kidney stones can lead to a urinary tract infection or a kidney infection, so its important to get them checked out by your doctor. And, since the symptoms are so similar, getting a checkup is probably a good idea anyway just to rule out the possibility of an infection, and to make sure the stone is moving along as it should.
What Is A Kidney Infection Symptoms Causes Diagnosis Treatment And Prevention
A kidney infection, also known as pyelonephritis, occurs when harmful bacteria reach your kidneys as part of a urinary tract infection .
Most UTIs dont involve the kidneys. They affect only your lower urinary tract, meaning your urethra and bladder. But sometimes an infection that begins there moves into your upper urinary tract, affecting one or both kidneys.
Its also possible to get a kidney infection following surgery, if bacteria enter your body during the procedure and travel through your bloodstream to your kidneys. In this case, your lower urinary tract may not be affected.
If you have symptoms of a UTI or bladder infection such as pain with urination, smelly urine, low back pain, or discolored urine its important to seek medical treatment to prevent the infection from spreading to your kidneys.
Kidney infections can be quite painful and require prompt evaluation and treatment. If your infection isnt treated soon enough, it may permanently damage your kidneys or spread to your bloodstream, possibly leading to and the impairment of other vital organs.
Don’t Miss: Do Kidney Stents Cause Pain
Alternative And Complementary Therapies
There are no effective alternative or complementary methods or therapies for curing a kidney infection.
But there may be ways you can increase your comfort while being treated with antibiotics, such as placing a heating pad on your abdomen, back, or side to ease any pain in those areas.
Drinking plenty of fluids can also help flush the bacteria causing the infection from your system.
And getting plenty of rest will help in your recovery from the infection.
Drink Plenty Of Liquids
Drinking plenty of liquids, particularly water, will help to wash bacteria from your bladder and urinary tract.
Drinking cranberry juice or taking cranberry extracts may also help prevent urinary tract infections . However, you should avoid cranberry juice or extracts if you’re taking warfarin, a medicine used to prevent blood clots. Cranberry juice can make the effects of warfarin more potent, so there’s a risk of excessive bleeding.
Recommended Reading: What Is The Best Diet For Kidney Stones