Urinary Tract Infection

Medically reviewed by Carina Fung, PharmD, BCPPS

UTI treatment

Because UTIs are bacterial infections, they can be treated26 with prescription antibiotics.

UTIs can also be classified as simple or complicated27. The type of treatment administered to a patient with a urinary tract infection depends on the type of UTI they have.

Simple UTIs occur most commonly in women, but generally in healthy people without any urinary tract abnormalities. They can generally be treated with a short (roughly 3-day long) course of antibiotics. Drinking plenty of fluids also helps pass the infection from the body more quickly. Women who are postmenopausal may also benefit from topical estrogen hormone replacement.

Complicated UTIs occur when a patient has an abnormally structured urinary tract or when the bacteria causing the UTI is not eradicated with most antibiotics. The urinary tract infections that occur in men and children are generally considered to be complicated. Kidney infections are also often treated in the same way that other complicated UTIs are.

Complicated UTIs are commonly treated with a longer course of antibiotics than is used to treat simple ones. If the infection is severe, antibiotics may be administered intravenously (IV) in a hospital. This is followed with an oral dose of antibiotics that lasts for as long as two weeks.

UTI medicine

While the pain caused by UTIs usually subsides shortly after beginning a dose of antibiotics, your healthcare provider may also prescribe an analgesic—a pain reliever that numbs the bladder and urethra. This helps to alleviate burning sensations during urination.

May be prescribed

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UTI prevention

If you are prone to UTIs (or simply want to avoid them), there are several steps you can take to help prevent28 yourself from developing a UTI:

  • Drink plenty of fluids to help flush the urinary tract of any bacteria
  • Don’t wait to urinate if you need to go
  • Talk with your healthcare provider to determine whether a diaphragm or spermicidal agent may be causing your UTIs
  • Urinate after sexual intercourse to help remove bacteria from the urinary tract and prevent infection
  • Women should wipe from front to back after using the bathroom to prevent the spread of bacteria to the urethral opening.
  • Men with BPH can cut out caffeine and alcohol to help improve urine flow

Disclaimer: The information on this site is generalized and is not medical advice. It is intended to supplement, not substitute for, the expertise and judgment of your healthcare professional. Always seek the advice of your healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard seeking advice or delay in seeking treatment because of something you have read on our site. RxSaver makes no warranty as to the accuracy, reliability or completeness of this information.

If you are in crisis or you think you may have a medical emergency, call your doctor or 911 immediately.