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.
Women are at greater risk of developing a UTI than are men. Infection limited to your bladder can be painful and annoying. However, serious consequences can occur if a UTI spreads to your kidneys.
Doctors typically treat urinary tract infections with antibiotics. But you can take steps to reduce your chances of getting a UTI in the first place.
Symptoms of a UTI depend on what part of the urinary tract is infected.
Lower tract UTI symptoms
Lower tract UTIs affect the urethra and bladder. Symptoms of a lower tract UTI include:
- burning with urination
- increased frequency of urination without passing much urine
- increased urgency of urination
- bloody urine
- cloudy urine
- urine that looks like cola or tea
- urine that has a strong odour
- pelvic pain in women
- rectal pain in men
Upper tract UTI symptoms
Upper tract UTIs affect the kidneys. These can be potentially life threatening if bacteria move from the infected kidney into the blood. This condition, called urosepsis, can cause dangerously low blood pressure, shock, and death.
Symptoms of an upper tract UTI include:
- pain and tenderness in the upper back and sides
UTIs may be overlooked or mistaken for other conditions in older adults.
UTI symptoms in men
Symptoms of an upper tract urinary infection in men are similar to those in women. However, men with a lower tract UTI may sometimes also experience rectal pain
Types of urinary tract infection
Each type of UTI may result in more-specific signs and symptoms, depending on which part of your urinary tract is infected.
|Part of urinary tract affected
|Signs and symptoms
|Kidneys (acute pyelonephritis)
When to see a doctor
Contact your doctor if you have signs and symptoms of a UTI.
If you would like to speak to our team about urinary symptoms or other treatments, please call us on 0161 327 1269 or email us at email@example.com. We also offer treatment for other urological cancers.
This article is intended to inform and give insight but not treat, diagnose or replace the advice of a doctor. Always seek medical advice with any questions regarding a medical condition.