urinary tract infection

Table of Contents

What is a urinary tract infection (UTI)?

A urinary tract infection, or UTI, is when bacteria gets into your urinary tract- kidneys, bladder, or urethra. UTIs are very common: about 60% of women and 12% of men will have at least one UTI during their lifetime.


When you have a UTI, the lining of the bladder and urethra become irritated. The irritation can cause pain in your lower abdomen or pelvic area and even lower back, and will usually make you feel like urinating more often. Burning or pain when urinating is the most common symptom. You may even feel a strong urge or need to urinate but only get a few drops. This is because the bladder is so irritated that it makes you feel like you have to urinate, even when you don’t have much urine in your bladder. At times, you may lose control and leak urine. You may also find that your urine smells bad and is cloudy.

Kidney infections often cause fevers and upper back pain – usually on one side or the other. Kidney infections may also often cause nausea and vomiting. These infections need to be treated at once because a kidney infection can spread into the bloodstream and cause a life-threatening health issue.


Large numbers of bacteria live in the area around the vagina and rectum and also on your skin. Bacteria may get into the urine from the urethra and travel into the bladder. They may even travel up to the kidney. Just as some people are more prone to colds, some people are more prone to UTIs. Women are more likely to get a UTI than men because women have shorter urethras than men, so bacteria have a shorter distance to travel to reach the bladder.

Some factors that can add to your chances of getting a UTI are:

  • Menopause
  • Birth Control 
  • Abnormal Anatomy
  • Weak Immune System
  • Diabetes


UTIs can be diagnosed by analyzing a urine sample. The urine is examined under a microscope for the presence of bacteria or white blood cells, which are signs of infection. In cases where infection is suspected, a urine culture is taken to detect and identify the specific bacteria or yeast responsible for the UTI.

If you ever notice blood in your urine, it’s essential to contact the office immediately. While it may be caused by a UTI, it could also indicate another issue within the urinary tract.

If you experience persistent fevers and UTI symptoms that don’t improve with therapy, it’s important to reach out as well. In such situations, further tests, like an ultrasound or CT scan, may be necessary to thoroughly assess the urinary tract.


UTI treatment includes antibiotics, as well as bladder-specific pain medicines like AZO or Uribel. It is also important to increase fluid intake during the treatment.

If you experience frequent UTIs (3 or more per year), it is advisable to consider preventive measures. These may include taking cranberry and vitamin C supplements, antiseptics, and even antibiotics.

For individuals who tend to get UTIs after sexual activity, there are preventive strategies available to reduce the frequency of UTIs.

Schedule an Appointment​

If you’re interested in learning more about your treatment options for Urinary Tract Infections, your first step is to schedule an appointment with Dr. Dubinskaya. To get started, contact our office by calling 424-210-9030 or filling out our online form.

MEET Dr. Alexandra Dubinskaya

A leader in women’s sexual health

Dr. Alexandra Dubinskaya is a board-certified, fellowship-trained Urogynecologist and Sexual Health specialist whose mission is to enhance women’s quality of life by improving their pelvic and sexual health. Dr. Dubinskaya’s focus is on making a difference in people’s lives through state-of-the-art, compassionate, and personally tailored care.

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