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Encyclopedia > Urinary tract infections

A urinary tract infection is an infection of the urinary tract. An infection anywhere from the kidneys to the ureters to the bladder to the urethra qualifies as a urinary tract infection.

In females, the urethra is much shorter and closer to the anus than in males. This is the reason why, in general, women are more prone to UTIs than men. The article on vulvovaginal health has some health tips for preventing UTIs.

Symptoms of a urinary tract infection include dysuria (pain on passing urine), frequency (of passing urine) and hematuria (blood in the urine). Other helpful signs include cloudy or smelly urine. A urine dipstick test is often useful in the diagnosis.

While empirical treatment with antibiotics will cure most urinary tract infections, sometimes a urine culture may be necessary to identify the causative organism and its sensitivity to antibiotics in order to prescribe the correct antibiotic.

Patients with recurrent UTIs may need further investigation. This may include ultrasound scans of the kidneys and bladder or intravenous urography (X-rays of the urological system following intravenous injection of iodinated contrast material).

External links

  • NIH articles on Urinary Tract Infections in Adults (http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/utiadult/) and in Children (http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/utichildren/).

  Results from FactBites:
About Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) (1377 words)
Urinary tract infections are caused by the infection of the yeast on the urinary tract
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of the urethra or bladder or kidneys
Urinary tract infection is caused by bacterial infection on the urinary tract
Circumcision and Urinary Tract Infection (2499 words)
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are bacterial infections of the urinary tract (kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra).
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Differentiation and developmental pathways of uropathogenic Escheria coli in urinary tract pathogenesis.
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