Managing UTIs – Dr. Amon Rukundo advises

LinkmeUg – Young and healthy is covering Urinary Tract Infections in a 3 part series. In the first 2 articles, we spoke to young men and ladies on their experience with these infections and what they think prevents them.

See details –  http://linkme.co.ug/2017/01/utis-what-do-you-know/  http://linkme.co.ug/2017/01/dealing-with-utis-the-guys-speakout/

LinkmeUg’s Kigozi Curthbert caught up with Doctor Rukundo Amon of International Medical Link, Wandegeya for facts about UTIs.

What is a Urinary Tract Infection?

Dr. Rukundo: It’s an infection in the urinary tract. The urinary tract includes the kidneys, the bladder and the urethra.

What causes urinary tract infections?

Dr. Rukundo: UTIs are caused by bacteria that get into the urinary tract. Any part of your urinary tract can become infected, but bladder and urethra infections are the most common.

Symptoms

Dr. Rukundo: There are possible symptoms of a urinary tract infection and they include;

  • A burning sensation or pain when you urinate
  • Feeling like you need to urinate more often than usual
  • Feeling the urge to urinate but not being able to.
  • Leaking a little urine
  • Cloudy, dark, smelly or bloody urine.

Why do women get urinary tract infections more often than men?

Dr. Rukundo: Women tend to get urinary tract infections more often than men because bacteria can reach the bladder more easily in women. This is because women have a shorter Urethra than men which shortens the distance traveled by the bacteria. It is most likely to happen if one wipes from back to front instead of front to back.

How does one prevent UTIs? 

Dr. Rukundo:

  • Don’t hold your urine. Urinate when you feel like you need to.
  • Wipe from front to back.
  • Urinate after having sex to help wash away bacteria. Having unprotected sex may also cause UTIs in women because bacteria can be pushed into the urethra.
  • If you are uncircumcised, wash the foreskin regularly.
  • Drinking alot of water to help flush out the bacteria.

Test and treatment for UTIs

Dr. Rukundo: A urine sample is taken, which is then tested for the presence of UTI-causing bacteria. When one is diagnosed to be with a UTi, antibiotics  are prescribed for him/her to kill the intruders. As always, be sure to finish off the prescribed medicine completely, even after you start to feel better.

How to know the treatment isn’t working? 

Dr. Rukundo: If the treatment isn’t working, your symptoms will persist, get worse or you will develop new symptoms. So if you take medication for 3 days and still have a burning feeling when you urinate, it’s time to call the doctor again.

Can a UTI cause serious damage to the kidneys?

Dr. Rukundo: Yes, sometimes a UTI can damage the kidneys so It’s important to seek treatment right away.

By Kigozi Curthbert

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