Pediatrics - Urinary Tract Infection, Bladder Infection
IntroductionUrinary Tract Infections (UTIs) are a common condition. Most UTIs result from infection caused by bacteria that enters the urinary tract system. UTIs can be quite uncomfortable and lead to problems with urination. Fortunately, most UTIs respond well to prescription medication in a short amount of time.
Age can influence the type of UTI symptoms that people have. Young children may only experience a fever or no symptoms at all. In older adults, a UTI can cause mental confusion or behavioral changes. Older adults with such symptoms should be tested to see if the infection has spread to their blood.
Women and girls should avoid bubble bath products. Bubble baths do not cause a UTI, but they can irritate the urinary tract. Women prone to UTIs should avoid using birth control methods such as a contraceptive diaphragm and spermicidal jelly. Women should not douche or using similar feminine hygiene products.
Am I at Risk
Is My Child at Risk?
Certain people appear more likely to get UTIs than others. Females are more susceptible to UTIs than males because their urethra is shorter and located near their anal area. Some children develop UTIs. Girls tend to get UTIs around age three, during the toilet training period. UTIs are especially common in women between the ages of 20 and 50 years old. Sedentary or immobile people, such as people in a nursing home or some people of older age are at higher risk for developing UTIs.
Risk factors may increase your child’s likelihood of developing a UTI. People with all of the risk factors may never develop a UTI; however, the chance of developing a UTI increases with the more risk factors your child has. You should tell your doctor about your child’s risk factors and discuss your concerns.
Risk factors for UTIs:
_____ During the toilet training years, children are at risk for developing UTIs, particularly females.
_____ Females that are pregnant are more likely to develop UTIs.
_____ People that are immobile or do not move much. For example, people in a nursing home have an increased risk for developing UTIs.
_____ People with neurological conditions that affect the bladder’s nerve conduction including diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and spinal cord injuries are more prone to developing UTIs.
_____ People that use a catheter, a tube placed in the body that drains the urine from the bladder to a collection bag, are more likely to develop infections.
_____ People with a urine blockage, such as from a kidney stone, narrowed urethra, tumor, or enlarged prostate gland are prone to getting UTIs.
_____ People with bowel incontinence, the inability to control when they have a bowel movement, are more likely to develop UTIs.
_____ Not drinking enough liquids can lead to development of a UTI.
_____ Sexual intercourse can increase the risk of getting a UTI, especially in women. Birth control such as a contraceptive diaphragm or spermicides can cause irritation.
_____ People with HIV have a greater risk of getting UTIs.
_____ People with multiple sex partners or who get certain sexually transmitted diseases, such as Chlamydia and mycoplasma, have recently been linked with bladder infections.
Complicated UTIs can cause a kidney infection. Kidney infections can be serious and require prompt treatment. In some cases, the infection can enter the bloodstream and cause sepsis. Sepsis is a blood infection that can affect other organs. This condition also requires prompt treatment.
UTIs can cause complications for pregnant females. UTIs increase a woman’s risk of delivering her baby early. Babies that are born early carry the risks associated with prematurity. Pregnant women susceptible to UTIs may be tested regularly and are sometimes treated with preventative antibiotics.
Some people develop chronic or recurrent UTIs. This is defined as UTIs that occur twice within a six-month period or at least three times in one year. Some UTIs may be resistant to antibiotics and difficult to treat. If your child experiences recurrent UTIs your doctor may order tests to help determine the best treatments for your child.