Bladder infection and cystitis caused by bacteria can be prevented in most cases. Treatment is also available in many cities hospital.
Urinary bladder infection: symptoms, causes and treatments
A urinary bladder infection is a type of urinary tract infection (UTI), caused within the bladder due to a bacterial infection. An infection in the bladder leads to inflammation in the bladder which is also known as cystitis. The bladder serves as a storage unit for urine before it is flushed out of our systems. Bacteria are usually excreted along with the urine, however sometimes it can latch onto the walls of the bladder and multiply, thereby resulting in an infection.
A urinary bladder infection can present with certain signs and symptoms. Pain during urination and a burning or stinging sensation during urination are the most common symptoms of an infection in the bladder. The number of times a person has to urinate or the urge for urination may also increase all of a sudden. It may also cause difficulty in voiding urine which refers to difficulty in emptying the bladder or urinary incontinence which means involuntary loss of urine. You may also notice certain changes in the urine such as cloudy, bloody or foul smelling urine. You may also experience pain in the pelvic or abdomen area which is a result of pain in the bladder. If the infection spreads you may experience symptoms like fever, nausea, vomiting, chills which could indicate a kidney infection, in which case you should seek medical help immediately.
An infection in the bladder can be caused by bacteria present in the urine which may manifest in the bladder. However, a bacterium most commonly enters through the urethra externally. Bacteria usually travel from the rectum or vagina towards the urethra or from nearby skin into the bladder through the urethra. The Escherichia coli ( E. coli ) bacteria is the most common cause of infections. It is naturally present in the large intestine and the stool but can create a problem when it travels through the urethra into the bladder. Women are more susceptible to bladder infections than men as they have shorter urethras as compared to men and the distance between the rectum and the urethra is also comparatively less in women, thereby making it easier for the bacteria to travel.
A few factors can increase your chances of having an infection. For example, old age can cause the enlargement of the prostate in men which can cause blockages in the flow of the urine thereby making them more susceptible to an infection. In women, pregnancy can have a similar effect, as the enlarging uterus can cause a pressure on the bladder and disrupt normal urine flow. Certain others such as diabetes, insufficient fluid intake, a weakened immune system, blockage or narrowing of the urethra, use of urinary catheters or sexual intercourse can also be instrumental in causing infections.
Urinary bladder infections are not a major worry, even though they seem like it. Most infections can be treated in a span of 2-3 days with the help of medications. The medications prescribed are usually oral medications which help in fighting off the infection. The doctor may also prescribe some medications for pain and burning if you are experiencing those symptoms. If you have a chronic condition, that is, if you have recurring bladder infections, then the doctor might prescribe daily antibiotics as treatment in addition to some other tests to make sure that the urinary tract is healthy.
It is best however to take precautions and reduce the chances of occurrence or reoccurrence of infections. Certain simple lifestyle changes such as drinking adequate water and maintaining hygiene can help. Also, seeking medical intervention at the soonest possible in case of an infection would help in preventing the infection from spreading and becoming more severe.
Dr Shailesh Raina is one of the best Urologist to consult at Jaslok Hospital and Research Centre, Peddar Road, Mumbai. There is also specialized Urology department at Wockardt Hospital, Mumbai Central, Mumbai having well known urologists listed for consultation.