Not to single out the ladies, but in this article we’re going to focus on how a urinary tract infection can affect men.
Let’s get started…
Urinary tract infections are rare in men. Men below 50 years of age normally don’t get a urinary tract infection, but the possibility increases with advancing age. Three percent of males are likely to get this infection in their 60’s and the percentage of urinary tract infection in men increases to 10% above the age of 80.
Urinary tract infections in men most commonly are caused by bacteria called E Coli which are commonly found around the anus after passing a stool. These other harmless bacteria can cause this infection if they get into the urinary tract through the urethra. Sometimes the infection can also be caused by other bacteria such as Chlamydia and Mycoplasma. Men are less prone to getting a UTI because their urethra is considerably long and is located farther from their anus thus limiting the possibility of an infection.
Urinary tract infection in men is generally considered to be complex as it is often associated with some other underlying medical condition. Some of the major underlying conditions that appear in men that can indicate infection are:
Kidney stone: A kidney stone can block the passage of urine partially or completely and result in the urine staying in the bladder. This becomes a thriving ground for the infectious bacteria. Sometimes, the stone while passing through the urinary tract damages the internal lining of the urethra creating damaged areas for the bacteria to grow and cause infection.
Weak Immune system: Conditions like AIDS or cancer treatments like chemotherapy weaken the immune system thereby affecting the body’s power to fight infections. So if a man has an infection it can be indicative of a weakened immune system. Diabetes also weakens the immune system and thus a urinary tract infection can be indicative of the condition.
Enlarged prostate: An enlarged prostate can block the urinary passage making complete emptying of the bladder difficult. This causes some of the urine to pool in the bladder and gives rise to the growth of infection causing bacteria.
Urinary reflux: Each of the 2 ureters have a one way valve which makes the urine flow towards the bladder from the kidneys and prevents it from flowing backwards. If this system does not work properly, urine can flow back towards the kidneys causing serious health problems. This condition often gives rise to urinary tract infection in men.
Though a urinary infection is more likely to occur in men with these problems, there are cases when a male develops such an infection without any underlying condition. In such cases it is a simple infection which can be diagnosed by a urine test and treated with a 7 to 14 day course of antibiotics. Timely and correct diagnosis is a must in case of this type of bacterial infection. The problem can worsen if not treated properly; also when a urinary infection is a symptom of some other problem, the right treatment can only become possible after diagnosis. Do not hesitate, see your doctor immediately.
Most simple urinary tract infections in men begin to subside within the first few days of taking the treatment, but the course of prescribed medicines must be completed in order to get rid of the infection. Along with the treatment, the patient should take plenty of fluids to flush the germs out of the system. Acidic (some fruit juices), alcoholic, sugary and caffeinated drinks should be avoided as they irritate the bladder. It is advisable to keep away from spicy and heavy food as this might also irritate the urinary tract (sorry guys… beer and wings can be bad news!)
Be aware, keep yourself informed and do not take chances when it comes to your health. The right attitude is the best start to treating a problem.
However it is extremely important to diagnose and treat urinary tract infections in men in the initial stages to avoid complications.
Do not neglect even the slightest symptoms