Urinary Tract Infections in Teens and Adults (cont.)
IN THIS ARTICLE
Typically, UTIs cause urinary symptoms, such as pain or burning during urination. Some mild bladder infections may go away on their own within a couple of days. Most UTIs clear up quickly with antibiotics and home treatment, which includes drinking plenty of water and urinating frequently. The amount of time required to cure the infection and the need for urine tests will vary with the location (bladder or kidneys), frequency, and seriousness of the infection. Kidney infections and UTIs that are complicated by other factors require longer treatment.
Complications of UTIs are not common but do occur. Serious complications can include permanent kidney damage and widespread infection (sepsis), which can be life-threatening. The risk is greater if the infection is not treated or if the infection does not respond to antibiotics.
Although it is possible to have a relapse of the same infection, most recurrent UTIs are caused by new infections. About 20 to 30 out of 100 women have recurrent infections.1 A rapid relapse usually means that treatment failed or there is another problem affecting the urinary tract (not just the infection). But recurrent UTIs in women usually aren't serious.
UTIs in men
Men sometimes have uncomplicated urinary tract infections.
UTIs in older men are more often related to prostate problems. This can make them more difficult to treat. Having an enlarged prostate, which is common in older men, can limit the body's ability to pass urine. Repeated UTIs may indicate prostatitis, epididymitis, or another urinary tract problem. For more information, see the topic Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia, Epididymitis, or Prostatitis.
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