HomeNewsWhat Should You Do If You Have A Kidney Infection

What Should You Do If You Have A Kidney Infection

What Are The Types Of Dialysis

How To Tell If You Have A Kidney Infection

Dialysis is a process that does the work of healthy kidneys when you have kidney failure. Dialysis filters wastes, removes extra fluid, and restores the proper balance of chemicals in the blood.

There are two basic types of dialysis: hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis.

  • Hemodialysis uses a man-made membrane called a dialyse to clean your blood. You are connected to the dialyse by tubes attached to your blood vessels. Before hemodialysis treatments can begin, your doctor will need to create a site where blood can flow in and out of your body. This is called the dialysis access. In some cases, hemodialysis can be done at home. You will need to be trained, and you will need to make room for the dialysis machine. You may have choices for how often and how long you need dialysis.
  • Peritoneal dialysis uses the lining of your belly, which is called the peritoneal membrane, to filter your blood. Before you can begin peritoneal dialysis, your doctor will need to place a catheter in your belly for the dialysis access.

Kidney Infection Symptoms In Women

Word to the wise: never ignore a UTI.

If youve ever had a urinary tract infection, you know the pain-in-the-ass symptoms that come with it: a burning sensation when you pee, the need to go all the time. Well, those symptoms are also indicators of another serious health issue: a kidney infection.

While kidney infections are rare in otherwise healthy people, most do start as a UTI. As soon as you start having other symptoms , thats when you worry it might be moving beyond the bladder, says Staci Leisman, M.D., internist and nephrologist at Mount Sinai Hospital. Its called an ascending infectionit literally moves up from the bladder into the kidneys.

A kidney infection can be easily treated with oral antibiotics , says Leisman. But in rare cases, an untreated kidney infection can progress to septic shock, which can be fatal. Other worst-case scenarios: super-high blood pressure, leading to kidney failure or kidney scars, which can cause chronic kidney disease.

Chances are, if youre experiencing the uncomfortable symptoms of a UTI, youre going to head to your ob-gyn ASAP. But if for some reason youve been putting it off, and you start to notice any of the symptoms below, you could be at risk for developing a kidney infection.

Treatment Of Kidney Infection

Most kidney infections need prompt treatment with antibiotics to stop the infection damaging the kidneys or spreading to the bloodstream.

You may also need painkillers.

If you’re especially vulnerable to the effects of an infection , you may be admitted to hospital and treated with antibiotics through a drip.

Most people who are diagnosed and treated promptly with antibiotics feel completely better after about 2 weeks.

People who are older or have underlying conditions may take longer to recover.

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What Are The Causes Of Kidney Infections

Normally, bacteria are flushed out by the flow of urine. However, several problems can increase the risk of a kidney infection. These problems can include:

  • Structural abnormalities blocking urine flow.
  • An enlarged prostate gland compressing the urethra.
  • Backflow of urine from the bladder to the kidneys.
  • If your immune system is affected .
  • Pregnancy, during which time the enlarging uterus can squeeze the ureters and reduce the flow of urine, allowing the bacteria to migrate to the kidneys.
  • Uncontrolled diabetes mellitus.

Can Kidney Infections Be Prevented

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD): Overview and More

You can reduce your chances of developing a kidney infection by keeping your bladder and urethra free from bacteria. This can include drinking plenty of fluids, keeping your genitals clean and treating any constipation.

The symptoms of a kidney infection usually develop quite quickly over a few hours or days.

Common symptoms include:

  • pain and discomfort in your side, lower back or around your genitals
  • high temperature
  • shivering or chills
  • feeling very weak or tired
  • loss of appetite

You may have other symptoms if you also have cystitis or urethritis . These additional symptoms may include:

  • pain or a burning sensation during urination
  • need to urinate frequently or urgently
  • feeling that you’re unable to urinate fully
  • blood in your urine
  • cloudy or foul smelling urine
  • pain in your lower abdomen

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Drink Plenty Of Fluids

Theres no magic behind the cliché advice to drink eight glasses of water a day, but its a good goal precisely because it encourages you to stay hydrated. Regular, consistent water intake is healthy for your kidneys.

Water helps clear sodium and toxins from your kidneys. It also lowers your risk of chronic kidney disease.

Aim for at least 1.5 to 2 liters in a day. Exactly how much water you need depends largely on your health and lifestyle. Factors like climate, exercise, gender, overall health, and whether or not youre pregnant or breastfeeding are important to consider when planning your daily water intake.

People who have previously had kidney stones should drink a bit more water to help prevent stone deposits in the future.

When To See A Doctor

If you have signs of a kidney infection, you should see a doctor right away. Again, a kidney infection is seriousit can sometimes lead to a dangerous, life-threatening health condition called , the NIDDK says. Even if your infection doesnt progress to that, a kidney infection can become chronic, i.e., long-lasting, and can cause permanent damage to your kidneys, the NIDDK says. Kaufman recommends heading to your local urgent care facility or emergency room if you have signs of a kidney infection.

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Can A Kidney Infection Be Prevented Or Avoided

You can help prevent a kidney infection or UTI if you:

  • Drink enough water
  • Dont hold urine in
  • Avoid using douches and scented products in your genital area
  • Wipe your genital area from front to back

Although anyone can get a kidney infection, some people are at greater risk. Youre more likely to get a kidney infection if you:

  • Are pregnant
  • Have an oddly-shaped urinary tract
  • Have a kidney stone
  • Have an enlarged prostate
  • Have a weakened immune system
  • Have to use a catheter to remove urine from your bladder
  • Have vesicoureteral reflux . This is a condition where urine can flow up or down your ureters

What Does A Kidney Infection Feel Like

Kidney & Bladder Health : How to Treat a Kidney Infection

Generally speaking, the symptoms of a kidney infection tend to come on over a period of several hours to a day. The symptoms may include:

  • Pain. This is often a dull, aching type of pain that most commonly affects the back, side, or abdomen.
  • Urine changes. If you have a kidney infection, you may notice that your urine is cloudy, smells bad, or contains blood.
  • Urgent, painful urination. A UTI can irritate the lining of your urinary tract. As a result, you may feel the urgent need to urinate and experience a painful, burning sensation when you do so.
  • Fever. People with a kidney infection typically develop a fever, which can often be high. A raised temperature is one of your bodys ways of trying to fight the infection.
  • Chills.Chills are a feeling of being cold without any apparent cause. For example, you could be wrapped up under a blanket and still shiver or feel very cold. In extreme cases, chills may lead to episodes of strong, uncontrollable shaking, which are known as rigors.
  • Nausea or vomiting. The infection may cause you to feel nauseated or to vomit.

Its important to note that you may not have all of the above symptoms with a kidney infection. If you develop concerning symptoms that may point to a kidney infection, seek prompt medical care.

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When To Seek Medical Advice

Contact your GP if you have a high temperature, persistent pain, or if you notice a change to your usual pattern of urination. Contact your GP immediately if you think your child may have a kidney infection.

If you have blood in your urine, you should always see your GP so the cause can be investigated.

Kidney infections require prompt treatment with antibiotics to help relieve symptoms and prevent complications developing.

Your GP can carry out some simple tests to help diagnose a kidney infection.

See diagnosing kidney infections for more information

What Should You Do If You Suspect A Kidney Infection

If you suspect you may have a kidney infection, dont ignore it. These symptoms will not just go away on their own. A kidney infection that is left untreated can result in:

  • Kidney scarring
  • Kidney failure
  • High blood pressure
  • Blood poisoning : If untreated, the bacteria from the kidney infection spreads into your bloodstream and can cause the infection to become life-threatening.

A kidney infection is a serious condition that deserves prompt medical care. Visit a doctor or urgent care unless your symptoms are severe.

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Antibiotics And Your Health

Now that you know there is no single food good for kidney repair, if you have a kidney infection or UTI, visit your doctor as soon as you can. If the cause is a bacterial infection, you’ll probably be prescribed an antibiotic. The Mayo Clinic states that antibiotics are the first line of defense for kidney infections.

Even after you feel better, continue to take your antibiotics until you have finished all the medication. If you don’t, the bacteria may linger and the infection may not go away or it may cause more serious complications, according to the Cleveland Clinic.

Your doctor may want to repeat a urine culture after you’ve completed the antibiotics to see if the infection has cleared up. If you still show signs of infection, you’ll probably be given another course of antibiotics to take. When you’ve finished taking your second course of antibiotics, you’ll repeat the urine culture.

What Is The Treatment For A Kidney Infection

How to Eat Right for Your Kidneys?

Kidney infections are treated with antibiotics. Your health care provider may tell you to take an antibiotic medicine that treats the most common types of infections, until your urine can be looked at to figure out the exact type of infection you have. Once your urine test results are available, your health care provider might tell you to take a different type of antibiotic, depending on the type of infection you have.

If you have a very serious infection, you may need to stay in the hospital to receive treatment.

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.

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Pretzels Chips And Crackers

Ready-to-eat snack foods like pretzels, chips, and crackers tend to be lacking in nutrients and relatively high in salt.

Also, its easy to eat more than the recommended portion size of these foods, often leading to even greater salt intake than intended.

Whats more, if chips are made from potatoes, theyll contain a significant amount of potassium as well.

SUMMARY

Pretzels, chips, and crackers are easily consumed in large portions and tend to contain high amounts of salt. Additionally, chips made from potatoes provide a considerable amount of potassium.

Follow Up With Your Doctor As Directed:

Write down your questions so you remember to ask them during your visits.

The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Drink Plenty Of Water

Flushing bacteria from the kidneys is an important goal when a person has a kidney infection. Drinking at least six to eight, 8-ounce glasses of water a day can help, according to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.

If a person has kidney failure, they may need to decrease this amount of fluid based on their doctors recommendations.

Key Points About Kidney Infection

What Should You Eat If You Have Kidney Disease?
  • Symptoms include fever and chills, lower back pain, lower tummy pain, nausea or vomiting, loss of appetite, needing to pee more often or a burning sensation when peeing.
  • A kidney infection needs to be treated urgently with antibiotics. If not treated quickly, the infection can cause and permanent damage to your kidneys.
  • A severe kidney infection may need hospital admission and intravenous antibiotics.
  • There are things you can do to help prevent kidney infection, eg, drinking plenty of water, making sure you keep your genitals clean and peeing after sex.
  • See your GP or go to the nearest emergency department immediately if you or someone you care for experiences any of these symptoms, as they may indicate sepsis:

    • slurred speech or confusion
    • feeling like you are going to die
    • skin mottled or discoloured.

    Call Healthline free on 0800 611 116 if you are unsure what to do. Ask Could this be ?

    If you have been given antibiotics and are feeling worse or have more of the symptoms above, contact your GP or go to the nearest emergency department. Do not wait until the morning.

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    Is It A Kidney Infection Or Something Else

    Your symptoms could also result from another common illness. Some similar conditions you may mistake for a kidney infection include:

    • Other UTIs. Other types of UTIs, such as those affecting the urethra and bladder, can also cause symptoms like urgent and painful urination, abdominal pain, and urine thats cloudy, foul-smelling, or bloody.
    • Kidney stones.Kidney stones are hard deposits of materials like calcium or uric acid that form in the kidneys. When they become lodged in the kidneys, they can cause pain in the abdomen, side, or back, as well as nausea and vomiting.
    • Lower back pain. If low back pain is your primary symptom, you may have a condition thats affecting your lower back. Examples include injuries, degenerative disc disease, and nerve compression.
    • Pregnancy. Symptoms like frequent urination, nausea and vomiting, and abdominal cramping can all be early signs of pregnancy.

    Its always a good rule of thumb to seek medical attention if you experience any new or concerning symptoms. A healthcare professional can work with you to determine what may be causing them.

    Heres an idea of what you can expect when you seek care for a possible kidney infection.

    Take An Epsom Salt Bath

    Both Epsom salts and warm water can ease pain. This can help to make the uncomfortable side effects of the kidney infection a little more tolerable while you wait for the antibiotics to take effect.

    Since abdominal pain is sometimes a symptom of antibiotics, as well as kidney infections, this could also help even after symptoms from the kidney infection are resolved. Read about how to make an Epsom salt detox bath, as well as potential side effects to keep in mind.

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    What Procedures And Tests Diagnose Kidney Infections In Men And Women

    The most important test in diagnosing kidney infection is a urinalysis . Urinalysis is a test to analyze urine sample and evaluate for an infection in the urine. Urinalysis is done by collecting a clean catch, midstream urine in a sterile collection cup. The urine may be analyzed by the doctor in the office using or by analysis in a laboratory.

    Because urine is normally sterile, any finding suggesting an infection may be considered abnormal and supportive of a kidney infection.

    What Are The Symptoms Of Kidney Infection

    World of Information: Symptoms of kidney disease you ...

    If you have a kidney infection, you may notice one or more of the following symptoms:

    • Fever
    • Pain in your back, side or groin
    • Chills
    • Feeling like you have to urinate often, even if you just went
    • Pain or burning when urinating
    • Pus or blood in your urine
    • Cloudy or bad-smelling urine

    If you notice any of these symptoms, contact your health care provider as soon as possible. If you are currently taking medicine to treat a urinary tract infection , but you are still having any of these symptoms, contact your health care provider.

    If your health care provider thinks you might have a kidney infection, he or she might ask you for a urine sample to look or bacteria or other signs of infection. You might also need to have a blood test or imaging tests, such as an X-ray, ultrasound or CT scan.

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    Causes Of Kidney Infections

    A kidney infection happens when bacteria infects your kidneys. The bacteria are usually a type called E. coli, which live in your bowel.

    The bacteria get in through the opening of the urethra and move upwards through your urinary tract, first infecting your bladder and then your kidneys.

    It’s thought the bacteria can get into your urinary tract by accidentally spreading from your anus to your urethra. This can happen if you wipe your bottom after going to the toilet and the soiled toilet paper comes into contact with your genitals. It can also happen during sex.

    In rare cases, a kidney infection can develop if bacteria or fungi infect the skin and the infection spreads through your bloodstream into your kidney. However, this type of infection usually only occurs in people with weakened immune systems.

    What Else Do You Need To Make Your Decision

    Check the facts

    • That’s right. Dialysis can help you feel better and live longer, but it is not a cure for kidney failure. After you start dialysis, you will need to keep doing it to stay as healthy as possible.
    • No, that’s not right. Dialysis can help you feel better and live longer, but it is not a cure for kidney failure. After you start dialysis, you will need to keep doing it to stay as healthy as possible.
    • It may help to go back and read “Get the Facts.” Dialysis can help you feel better and live longer, but it is not a cure for kidney failure. After you start dialysis, you will need to keep doing it.
    • That’s right. During hemodialysis, tubes connect your blood vessels to a man-made membrane called a dialyse, which cleans your blood.
    • No, that’s not right. During hemodialysis, tubes connect your blood vessels to a man-made membrane called a dialyse, which cleans your blood.
    • It may help to go back and read “Get the Facts.” During hemodialysis, tubes connect your blood vessels to a man-made membrane called a dialyse, which cleans your blood.

    How sure do you feel right now about your decision?

    Use the following space to list questions, concerns, and next steps.

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