Urinary tract infection – adult- patient education

Urinary tract infection – adult- patient education

Oak Valley Health's patient education pages share the skills, knowledge, and habits patients and families need to know to cope with a daily health issue. We hope this information can influence patient behaviour to improve health outcomes and provide you with a sense of control and autonomy.

Learn more about the risks, causes, and treatment of urinary tract infection

What is a urinary tract infection?

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection in any part of the urinary system. The urinary system includes:

  • Kidneys
  • Ureters
  • Bladder
  • Urethra

Urine is produced, stored, and eliminated by the urinary system.

What causes a urinary tract infection?

Bacterial infections are the most common cause of a urinary tract infection.

What increases the risks?
  • You have a catheter to drain urine
  • You cannot control bowel or urine function
  • You are female and use the following methods to prevent pregnancy
  • Spermicide
  • Diaphragm
  • You have low levels of estrogen
  • You are pregnant
  • Genetic history of UTI
  • You are sexually active
  • You take antibiotic medicines
  • You are diabetic
  • You have a weak immune system
How do I know that I have a urinary tract infection?
  • Urgently needing to urinate
  • Urinating often in small amounts
  • There is blood in urine
  • Urine smells bad
  • Difficulty urinating
  • Urine is cloudy
  • Fluid coming from vagina (female)
  • Vomiting
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhea
  • Fever
How is this treated?
  • Medicine
    • Antibiotics
  • Drinking plenty of water
If you have been diagnosed with a urinary tract infection, please contact your doctor or health care provider immediately if you are experiencing any of the following:
  • You do not get better after 1-2 days
  • Your symptoms come and go
  • Nausea/vomiting/discomfort in the lower back or side of the abdomen
If you have been diagnosed with a urinary tract infection, please get help immediately if you are experiencing any of the following:
  • You have back pain
  • You have pain in your abdomen
  • You have a fever
  • You feel nauseous/ vomiting
Where can I get more information?

Urinary Tract Infection (UTI) Website

Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) in Women Website

Reference: Urinary Tract Infection. (2021, June 08). Elsevier Inc: ClinicalKey for Nursing. Retrieved from here.