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Do you have UTI?

You've probably heard about the pains and dangers of urinary tract infection (UTI) from friends and colleagues: stinging or painful urination, dark and cloudy urine, as well as an intense urge to pass urine but only little comes out when you do. Everyone experiences a UTI from time to time, but it doesn't mean you should ignore its symptoms.

"UTI, if left untreated, can cause serious illness, especially if the infection from the urethra spreads to the kidneys. When bacteria attack the kidneys, they can cause damage that will permanently decrease kidney functions. Because of UTI, those people who already have kidney problems will increase the risk of kidney failure," said MediCard president Dr. Nicky Montoya.

Here are the facts you need to know about UTI.


Urinary tract infection or UTI is an infection anywhere in the urinary tract. The urinary tract comprises of the kidney, ureters, bladder, and urethra. UTI occurs when bacteria get into the urinary tract. Most infections arise from bacteria called Escherichia coli (E. coli), which normally lives in the colon and spreads to the urinary tract.


Women are more prone to UTI because their urethra is shorter than men's. The female urethra's location is close to the vagina and the anus, thus, it is easier for the bacteria to enter the urethra and work its way up into the bladder. Wiping from back to front after a bowel movement, having sexual intercourse, and waiting too long to pass urine, are some of the causes of UTIs in women.

UTIs in men are quite rare but more serious. Men are less likely to develop UTIs because their urethra is longer and the fluid produced in the prostate can fight the bacteria. Blockages in the urinary tract, not being circumcised, prostate problems, and sexual intercourse are some of the factors that increase the likelihood of developing a UTI in men.


People with UTI experiences pain or stinging during urination, a strong urge to pass urine, feeling tired or shaky, cloudy or milky look of the urine itself, strong odor of urine, and urine that appears red--blood is already present. Women may feel pain in the pelvic while men can feel rectal pain.


UTIs are treated with antibiotics, medicines that kill bacteria that cause the infection. Often, a UTI can be cured with one to two days of treatment if the infection is not complicated by an obstruction or nervous system disorder. It is important, however, to continue taking the medication until it is finished, even though the symptoms may be gone after a few days, to ensure that the infection has been cured.


Some steps to prevent UTI includes urinating when there is a need to, passing urine before and after sex, wiping from front to back after passing urine or having a bowel movement, drinking six to eight glasses of water a day, cleansing the genitals before and after sex, and wearing comfortable underwear. While these steps are useful, they don't guarantee that you won't get UTI.

When you feel any of these symptoms, it is important to see a urologist. MediCard has 12 free-standing clinics nationwide that offer consultations and laboratory tests. Visit a MediCard clinic near you or check out their website at for more information.

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Title Annotation:Wellbeing
Publication:Manila Bulletin
Date:Sep 29, 2015
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