Cystitis (urinary tract infection in women)
Which women are involved?
Cystitis (UTI) in women is very common. About half of women will get a urinary tract infection once in their lifetime. Young women who start having sex are more likely to be affected, as well as women who are entering or have just entered menopause. Most urinary tract infections are harmless but they can be particularly distressing because they recur
Does a woman with a urinary tract infection need to have any investigation?
Cystitis is an almost harmless condition. A general examination and urine culture will show us the condition, show the specific germ that causes it, and determine the appropriate antibiotic to treat it. This treatment consists of administering a suitable antibiotic for few days
What are the symptoms of UTI in women?
The symptoms are frequent urination, urge to urinate, feeling of pain or burning when urinating and pain or discomfort in the lower abdomen are the most common.
Blood in the urine is a very common finding in urinary tract infection
When a urinary tract infection is accompanied by a high fever with chills then it is called pyelonephritis. Pyelonephritis is a serious urinary tract infection that needs immediate treatment and hospitalisation.
When there is no fever then the urinary tract infection is called cystitis. This form is the most common in women.
Management and treatment of Cystitis
Cystitis can recur frequently in women. Recurrent cystitis is defined when they occur more than three times within six months or more than four times within a year. Recurrences of cystitis can be caused by a variety of causes. A basic check-up should be performed, which includes an ultrasound of the kidneys and the bladder, urination tests and some times a cystoscopy. Many times, however, we do not find an obvious cause.
Changes in a woman's hormonal environment can also alter the flora of the vagina and cause cystitis recurrences. Other causes are related to the change in the local defence of the bladder against germs. Low fluid intake, poor hygiene in the area, excessive use of antiseptics in the vagina or delayed urination for many hours resulting in a change in the normal flora and can cause cystitis recurrences.