If you think you might be suffering from a urinary tract infection, that alone is reason enough to see a doctor. Although it isn’t necessarily life-threatening, it can be very inconvenient and, more importantly, very uncomfortable and painful. But could your UTI be something more? A kidney infection occurs when a normal urinary tract infection travels up to the kidney.
What Are the Consequences?
A kidney infection is not something to be taken lightly. In fact, it is very serious and if left untreated for too long it can lead to permanent damage. If the bacteria gets into your blood stream, it can even bring on a more serious and even life-threatening infection. Luckily, it can often be treated with antibiotics.
But How Do You Know If You Have an Infection?
The symptoms for a kidney infection are very similar to those of a UTI. These include:
- A constant and strong feeling that you need to urinate
- Frequent urination
- Pain or a burning when relieving your bladder
- Urine that smells bad, is cloudy or discolored, or has pus or blood in it
- Pain in the abdomen, groin, side, or back
This can happen after a kidney surgery, but that is rare. Usually, you should watch out for these symptoms if you are already aware that you are at a higher risk for a urinary tract infection or you are already being treated for one.
The only way to know for sure whether or not you have a kidney infection, however—as well as the only way to treat it—is to see your doctor. If you are concerned about any symptoms, especially those listed above, and based on what you know, think it might be a kidney infection, go see your doctor as soon as possible. As mentioned above, waiting too long can lead to complication that have the potential to put your life at risk. When your doctor can easily diagnose you and prescribe you antibiotics to treat your infection, a simple visit is a small price to pay.
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