Recurrent Urinary Tract Infection


A recurrent urinary tract infection (UTI) may be generally defined as three or more infections within one year.

This may be idiopathic (no obvious cause or related to a urologic disorder such as stones, tumor, reflux (urine flows backwards toward the kidney) or ineffective bladder emptying. Treatment is aimed at identifying the cause and/or proper antibiotic therapy to break the cycle of recurrent infection.

What Is a Recurrent Urinary Tract Infection?

The urinary tract is the path by which urine is expelled from the body. Urinary tract infections are common among children and adults and are most often treated with antibiotics.

The cause of recurrent urinary tract infection is harmful bacteria that enter the urinary tract. Tests for the condition are conducted by a urologist to determine whether or not there is an underlying structural abnormality of the urinary tract predisposing the individual to recurrent infections.

Symptoms of Recurrent Urinary Tract Infection

The condition is caused by the presence of bacteria that enter the urinary tract of the child.
Symptoms may include:

  • High fever
  • Painful urination (difficult to determine in infants)
  • Frequent urination
  • Daytime urinary leakage
  • Discoloration of urine
  • Strong odor
  • Blood in the urine

Treatment

Your urologist will conduct a medical examination, lab tests, and radiographic imaging to determine the cause of the infections which in turn dictates prognosis and the course of treatment. Many infants and children experience urinary tract infections occasionally. Good hygiene is often the best defense against occasional urinary tract infections.

Parents who suspect urinary tract infections in their children should consult with their pediatrician who often refers the child to a urologist to determine the cause of the infection and outline the treatment plan.