Valley Urology Center
Urologists located in Renton, WA
Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are usually harmless, but they can indicate underlying problems like an enlarged prostate or kidney stones. At Valley Urology Center in Renton, Washington, the compassionate team of experts uses their advanced training in urological disorders to identify and treat uncomfortable conditions like UTIs. To find treatment for acute or chronic urinary tract infections if you’re in western Washington or the Pacific Northwest, call Valley Urology Center or schedule an appointment online today.
Urinary Tract Infection Q & A
What is a urinary tract infection?
A UTI affects your urinary system. This area of your body includes your kidneys, ureters, urethra, and bladder. Most urinary tract infections start in the bladder and urethra when bacteria multiply out of control.
While anyone can get a urinary tract infection, they’re most common in women. Additional factors that increase your chances of having a UTI include:
- Taking certain medications, like antibiotics
- Using certain forms of birth control, like spermicides
- Practicing poor personal hygiene
- Engaging in sexual activity
- Having reached menopause
- Having certain health conditions, like diabetes
Urinary tract infections are usually harmless, but when left untreated they can spread to your kidneys. They can also indicate an underlying health issue, like an enlarged prostate or kidney stones.
What are the symptoms of a urinary tract infection?
Urinary tract infections don’t always cause symptoms. When they’re present, however, they often include:
- Pain, burning, or discomfort while urinating
- Urinary incontinence
- Frequent and strong urges to urinate
- Strong-smelling or discolored urine
- Abnormal discharge
It’s also common for women to experience pain or pressure in the lower abdomen or pelvic area with a UTI.
How is a urinary tract infection diagnosed?
The experienced urology team at Valley Urology Center can diagnose a UTI with a urine sample.
For men and women with chronic infections or UTIs that don’t respond to treatment, your urologist might also recommend additional screenings like CT scans, MRIs, or cited scope imaging. These tests check for urinary tract abnormalities. In male patients, your urologist might also perform a digital rectal exam (DRE) or prostate-specific antigen (PSA) testing to look for prostate issues.
How is a urinary tract infection treated?
The majority of UTIs respond quickly to a short course of antibiotics. Your urologist can provide pain medication to relieve bladder discomfort as well if you’re also experiencing pain during urination.
If you have recurring or persistent UTIs, your urologist might recommend additional therapies, like long-term antibiotics or single-dose treatments. For women experiencing frequent UTIs after menopause, your urologist might also suggest vaginal estrogen therapy.
To learn more about diagnosing and treating urinary tract infections, call Valley Urology Center or schedule an appointment online today.
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