Kidney infection, or pyelonephritis, is an infection in the urinary tract in which the causative agent is able to reach the kidneys and cause them to become inflamed, leading to symptoms such as renal colic, foul-smelling urine, fever, and pain when urinating.
Kidney infection can be caused by bacteria, such as Escherichia coli (E. Coli), as well as by fungi of the Candida species, and even by viruses. Usually a kidney infection is a consequence of a bladder infection that lasts longer and causes the microorganisms that cause the infection to reach the kidneys and cause inflammation. In the case of chronic kidney infection, besides the microorganism infection, the presence of lesions in the urinary organs or kidney stones can also cause the kidney infection to appear.
Kidney infection should be diagnosed and treated as soon as it is discovered, to avoid serious damage to the kidneys or causing sepsis, in which the micro-organism can get into the bloodstream and go to different parts of the body, causing infection and possibly even leading the person to death. Understand what sepsis is.
Symptoms of Kidney Infection
The symptoms of kidney infection can appear suddenly and intensely, disappearing after a few days (acute kidney infection), or show no signs and symptoms, with the infection developing over time and, if left untreated, can develop into kidney failure (chronic kidney infection).
The main symptoms of kidney infection are
Severe pain in the lower back;
Difficulty in passing urine;
Frequent urination in small amounts
Pain or burning when urinating
Urine with bad smell;
In the presence of any of these symptoms, one should consult a urologist or nephrologist, who will diagnose the disease by evaluating the symptoms. The doctor will also perform a physical examination, such as palpation and precursion in the lumbar region, and a urine test to check for the presence of blood or white blood cells. See how the urine test is performed.
Kidney Infection of Pregnancy
Kidney infection in pregnancy is quite common and is usually a consequence of a prolonged bladder infection.
In pregnancy, increased levels of hormones, such as progesterone, lead to relaxation of the urinary tract, making it easier for bacteria to enter the bladder, where they multiply and cause inflammation of the organ. In cases where the infection is not diagnosed or treated effectively, the microorganisms continue to multiply and begin to climb into the urinary tract, until they reach the kidneys and cause their inflammation.
Treatment of kidney infection during pregnancy can be done with antibiotics that do not cause harm to the baby. Learn how to cure urinary infection in pregnancy.
How it is treated
Treatment of kidney infection will depend on the cause of the infection and whether it is acute or chronic. In cases where the infection is caused by bacteria, the treatment consists in the use of antibiotics, for a period that can vary from 10 to 14 days, depending on the medical orientation. Some painkillers or anti-inflammatory drugs are also indicated to relieve the pain.
The most effective treatment for chronic kidney infections is to eliminate their causes. Some kidney infection medications, such as antibiotics, can also be used to treat chronic kidney infection if there are signs of bacterial infection.
During treatment of kidney infection, drinking large amounts of water is important to facilitate healing of the disease.