Silent UTI Dangers


ORLANDO, Fla. (Ivanhoe Newswire) — Urinary tract infections, or UTI’s, are more than uncomfortable – they can be painful and cause other health issues. UTI’s occur when bacteria make contact with the urethra, and it’s quite common. According to the Urology Care Foundation, about 10 in 25 women and three in 25 men will contract a UTI in the United States. Symptoms of the condition almost always start immediately, but asymptomatic UTI’s, or a silent UTI, exist and are harder to track.

Burning … frequent trips to the bathroom … feeling as though you’re unable to empty your bladder are all signs of a urinary tract infection, commonly known as a UTI.

Lora Plaskon, MD, Epidemiologist/Urologist at Athena Women’s Health says “So, the bacteria that can cause the infection is from our own body, so, it’s something that we’ve ingested that’s now living in our body. The other sources are sexually transmitted infections.”

If left untreated, it could lead to lower back pain, fever, or even a kidney infection. That’s why it’s important to know what to look for with silent UTI’s.

In seniors, changes in behavior, fatigue or decreased appetite wouldn’t make you think about a UTI, but could be the first, and only signs of one. Also, cramping in the bladder and cloudy or bloody urine are subtle indicators. Lastly, pay attention to the odor of your urine. If it has an ammonia-like smell, you most likely have a UTI. One way to effectively treat or prevent it is with probiotics.

Doctor Plaskon says, “So, you can get probiotics from a variety of sources – you can buy it as a pure form, where it’s bacteria in a pill or liquid form but you can also get it in natural foods, too, and yogurt’s one of the most common one.”

Another way to reduce the risk of a silent UTI is by taking cranberry supplements or drinking cranberry juice. Drinking plenty of water throughout the day. Keeping you in the know on silent UTI’s.

Doctors warn that treating asymptomatic UTI’s with antibiotics could actually increase the risk of antibiotic resistance and can lead to longer hospital stays.

Contributors to this news report include: Adahlia Thomas, Producer; Roque Correa, Editor.



REPORT #3149

BACKGROUND: A urinary tract infection is a common infection in the urinary system. Bacteria, especially E. coli, are the most common cause of UTIs. The bacteria typically enter through the urethra and may infect the bladder. The infection can also travel up from the bladder through the ureters and eventually infect the kidneys. Approximately, eight to ten million people are treated for UTIs each year, and females are at highest risk of getting one. Symptoms include needing to pee often, pain while peeing, and pain in your side or lower back. There are tests that can help diagnose a UTI such as a urinalysis, urine culture, ultrasound, CT scan, and a cystoscopy where a cystoscope, a thin instrument with lens and a light at the end, looks inside the bladder through the urethra. There are antibiotics that can treat most UTIs.


RECURRING UTIs: Recurring UTIs are a symptom that should never be ignored, as they could be indicative of a more severe underlying issue. Other important symptoms to pay attention to include a high fever with chills, back or flank pain, nausea, vomiting, and changes in mental status or confusion. These symptoms could suggest that the UTI has ascended to the kidneys, a condition that requires immediate medical attention. Certain conditions, such as pregnancy, diabetes or having a compromised immune system, can increase the risk of severe UTIs. Good hygiene practices are crucial to help manage and prevent UTIs. Practices like wiping from front to back and keeping the genital area clean. Also, drinking plenty of water to flush out bacteria and urinating before and after sexual activity is recommended to help keep bacteria low. Avoiding irritating substances such as douches and powders in the genital area can also help prevent UTIs.


NEW STUDY IN LONG-TERM RELIEF FOR UTIs: Researchers, out of UT Southwestern Medical Center, conducted a study and were the first to demonstrate the long-term efficacy of electrofulguration, a minimally invasive outpatient procedure that treats chronic urinary tract infections (UTIs) among postmenopausal women. Electrofulguration targets superficial areas of chronic infection (cystitis or inflammation of the bladder) inside the bladder wall. Among the 96 patients who were all women, 72% were considered to have had successful treatment, with no more than one UTI annually; 22% had improved, with fewer than three UTIs annually; and 6% were unchanged. In addition, antibiotic usage declined significantly, with only 5% still on continuous antibiotics at their last follow-up compared with 74% pre-electrofulguration. “These findings demonstrate that electrofulguration provides a durable clinical cure that enables many postmenopausal women to remain UTI-free with minimal to no continued need for antibiotic therapy,” said study leader Philippe Zimmern, MD, Professor of Urology and Director of the John and Felecia Cain Center for Bladder Health at UT Southwestern.


* For More Information, Contact:                         Karrie Spitzer


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