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What is a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI)?

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are common yet discomforting conditions that affect millions of individuals worldwide. Whether you've experienced one yourself or know someone who has, understanding UTIs is crucial for prevention, early detection, and effective treatment.


What Is a Urinary Tract Infection?

A UTI occurs when bacteria enter the urinary tract, leading to an infection in any part of the system. The urinary tract comprises the kidneys, ureters, bladder, and urethra. Bacteria, most commonly Escherichia coli (E. coli), can travel from the anus to the urethra and further up the urinary tract, causing infection. While anyone can develop a UTI, women are particularly prone due to their shorter urethras, which provide easier access for bacteria.


Symptoms of UTIs

Recognizing the signs of a UTI is essential for prompt treatment. Common symptoms include:

  • Burning sensation during urination

  • Frequent or urgent need to urinate

  • Cloudy, dark, or foul-smelling urine

  • Pain or pressure in the lower abdomen or back

  • Fatigue, fever, or chills

In severe cases, UTIs can lead to complications such as kidney infections, characterized by additional symptoms like nausea, vomiting, and high fever.


Types of UTIs

UTIs can affect different parts of the urinary tract, resulting in various conditions:

  1. Cystitis (Bladder Infection): This type causes discomfort during urination, along with lower abdominal pain and bloody or cloudy urine.

  2. Pyelonephritis (Kidney Infection): Symptoms include fever, back pain, nausea, and vomiting, indicating a more serious infection.

  3. Urethritis (Urethral Infection): Characterized by burning during urination and discharge, urethritis primarily affects the urethra.



bathroom ducky
Should I be worried if I'm peeing a lot? Sometimes frequent urination may be due to a Urinary Tract Infection (UTI).

Causes and Risk Factors

Several factors increase the likelihood of developing a UTI:

  • Previous UTIs

  • Sexual activity

  • Female anatomy

  • Menopause

  • Pregnancy

  • Diabetes

  • Urinary obstructions or abnormalities

Additionally, certain practices, like improper hygiene or even contraceptive use, can contribute to higher UTI risk.


Diagnosis and Treatment

Diagnosing a UTI typically involves a urine test, which may include a dipstick analysis, urinalysis, or urine culture.


You may get a urinalysis test, along a quick check up - it's easy and convenient. We have partnered with HiPrecision Diagnostics to offer this service nationwide.




If you suspect you might be having any UTI symptoms or have questions about your urinalysis and your results, and want to speak to someone, book a session with one of our trusted OBGYN experts. We are offering a free introductory consultation, to answer any questions you may have with our doctors in a confidential setting.



 

Hati Health is a digital platform for women, providing on-demand access to products and services, including telehealth, symptom checking, holistic wellness plans and education.


We believe that being able to talk openly about women's healthcare and bringing appropriate solutions will inspire women to achieve their fullest potential in their personal and professional lives.

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