4 Pointers to Women Most at Risk of Urinary Tract Infections
When it comes to discussing urinary tract infections, it seems that every woman who has ever walked this earth has suffered from this awful and debilitating infection. The discomfort begins with when one is infected with a bacterium called Escherichia coli (usually a resident of the colon), which makes it way up the bladder and into the kidneys where it proceeds to multiply at a rapid rate, thus creating the dreaded and very painful symptoms of a full blown urinary tract infection, medically known as cystitis.
The Statistics published in the United States reveal that over eight million doctor visits – to private surgeries, clinics, hospitals and the like – are made because of urinary tract infections. These same statistics show that women are much more prone to the infection than men; and that it is the second most prevalent and common form of bodily infection.
The urine of a healthy person is sterile, which means that although it contains various salts and other waste materials, no bacteria, fungi or viruses are present. A urinary tract infection most commonly begins when bacteria from the digestive tract manage to get into the opening of the urethra, where they multiply at great speed. If these bacteria stay in the urethra and do not travel up the urinary tract, the infection is called urethritis; but if they do move up into the bladder, the infection then becomes known as cystitis. If left unchecked and untreated, the infection then progresses upwards to the kidneys, when its name changes yet again, and is now called pyelonephritis.
Two micro organisms, Mycoplasma and Chlamydia, are responsible for sexually transmitted infections of the urinary tract of both men and women. If infected by either of these micro organisms, both the man and the woman has to be treated to ensure the total eradication of the infection, so that it does not keep on re-infecting one or both of the couple.
The women most at risk of developing the urinary tract infections are:
1. Diabetes sufferers
2. Women who use a diaphragm as their means of birth control
3. Women whose sexual partners use condoms in conjunction with spermicidal foam
4. Anyone who was born with an abnormality of the urinary tract which has never been corrected
Although not every woman is aware of having a -- the urinary tract infection because she feels no discomfort or pain, most women do and the most common symptoms are described as frequent urination accompanied by a very strong burning pain and pressure or tenderness in the area of the bladder. ---- Tiredness and shakiness are also often reported. Even though the sufferer feels the urge to urinate often, very small amounts of urine are discharged; and the urine is generally not clear.
The good news for women who suffering from the urinary tract infections is that a short course of any of the commonly prescribed antibiotics from any of antibiotic classes usually clears up the trouble quickly and efficiently.