Urinary Tract Infection

What are Urinary Tract Infections?

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection in any part of your urinary system — your kidneys, ureters, bladder and urethra. Most infections involve the lower urinary tract — the bladder and the urethra.

How do you treat Urinary Tract Infection?

Doctors typically use antibiotics to treat urinary tract infections. Which drugs are prescribed and for how long depend on your health condition and the type of bacterium found in your urine.
Drugs commonly recommended for simple UTIs include:

  • Sulfamethoxazole-trimethoprim (Bactrim, Septra, others)
  • Amoxicillin (Amoxil, Augmentin, others)
  • Nitrofurantoin (Furadantin, Macrodantin, others)
  • Ampicillin
  • Ciprofloxacin (Cipro)
  • Levofloxacin (Levaquin)

Usually, symptoms clear up within a few days of treatment. But you may need to continue antibiotics for a week or more. Take the entire course of antibiotics prescribed by your doctor to ensure that the infection is completely gone.

For an uncomplicated UTI that occurs when you’re otherwise healthy, your doctor may recommend a shorter course of treatment, such as taking an antibiotic for one to three days. But whether this short course of treatment is adequate to treat your infection depends on your particular symptoms and medical history.

Your doctor may also prescribe a pain medication (analgesic) that numbs your bladder and urethra to relieve burning while urinating. One common side effect of urinary tract analgesics is discolored urine — orange or red.

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