University Health Services

Urinary Tract Infections (UTI)

 

Definition
An infection of one or more structures in the urinary tract.


Signs and Symptoms

Increased urination, sharp pain or burning with urination, feeling like you have to urinate even right after you've gone or not being able to go, blood in the urine, possible fever, lower back or flank pain, a feeling of pelvic heaviness, feeling like you have to urinate immediately and cannot wait.

Diagnosis and Treatment
Diagnosis will be with a urinalysis (UA). If treatment is needed, antibiotics will be prescribed by the nurse practitioner. Other treatment that can be performed by patient is increasing water consumption, and drinking cranberry juice or taking cranberry pills. An over-the-counter drug such as Uristat will help with the pain, but it will not cure an existing UTI. Please do not take Uristat or similar drugs for at least 8hr prior to appointment as it changes urine color and interferes with UA diagnostics.

NOTE: Our clinic is only authorized to treat uncomplicated UTIs. This means if you have had more than 3 infections in the last 12 months, we must refer you to a physician. We will happily give you a referral to comply with the student insurance requirements if you are in this category.

Prevention
Drink a minimum of 64 oz (about 2 L) of noncaffeinated fluids every day, do not wait long periods to void – empty your bladder as soon as you feel the urge, urinate before and after intercourse, avoid bubble baths or bath oils if you're susceptible to UTIs, female be sure to wipe from front to back after using the bathroom, avoid caffeine and smoking as they will irritate the bladder, 1-4 cranberry juice capsules daily; tight clothing, especially synthetic promote bacterial growth – cotton underclothing and loose clothes will discourage bacterial growth.

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