Understanding What a Urinary Tract Infection Is


If you’ve ever wondered how and why urinary tract infections (UTIs) occur, this video will answer many of your questions. A basic knowledge of the urinary system, clearly illustrated in the video, can help the viewer understand how these infections spread and cause symptoms. It’s also interesting to learn that male and female urinary systems significantly differ. A female has a shorter urethra (tube between the bladder and the outside of the body), which means women are at greater risk for urine infections.

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Upper and Lower Urinary Tract Infections

Infections occur when an infectious organism enters the body. Urine infections are most commonly caused by bacteria (one of the basic types of germs.) When the infection remains in the lower urinary tract (affecting the urethras or the outside of the body), it can cause burning with urination, urinary frequency, and blood in the urine. An upper urinary tract infection affects the bladder, ureter, or kidneys and can potentially lead to septic shock.

Treatment of Urinary Tract Infections

When a person has a lower UTI, the doctor will frequently order oral antibiotics. An upper UTI often requires intravenous antibiotics, and the person would most likely need to be in a hospital. In addition to these measures, people with urinary tract infections should drink plenty of water and cranberry juice. If a person continues to get these infections despite treatment, they may need to visit a urologist (doctor specializing in diseases of the urinary tract.).

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