Urinary Tract Infection Facts to Know

Urinary Tract Infection Facts to Know (<i>cont'd</i>)

6. Urinary urgency, urge incontinence and pain with urination can be early symptoms of urinary tract infection. Urinary urgency is characterized by frequent overwhelming urges to urinate. Urge incontinence is urine leakage resulting from not getting to a toilet in time

7. Urinary tract infections usually are not serious and are easily treated by taking antibiotics. Kidney infection is the most common complication and can produce fever, chills, nausea, vomiting and back pain. Severe cases may result in hospitalization.

8. Although urinary tract infections do occur in men, women are at greater risk for them because of their anatomy. The female urethra is short and the rectum, vagina and urethra are located closely together in women, making it easy to spread bacteria that live in the digestive tract to the urinary tract.

9. Women who have more than three urinary tract infections in a year may benefit from preventive antibiotic therapy. Such therapy may involve taking a low dose of medication every day for six months or longer, taking a single dose after having sex or taking a dose for one or two days when symptoms begin to appear.

10. When being treated for a urinary tract infection, just because your symptoms are gone doesn't mean the infection is. Make sure you take all the antibiotic medication you have been given, even if your symptoms are gone before you finish your prescription. If you fail to complete the entire treatment, the infection may still be present, and your symptoms will return, or another infection may arise in a short time.

Copyright 2003

National Women's Health Resource Center Inc. (NWHRC).

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