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Kidney infection or pyelonephritis is a serious medical condition that can cause permanent kidney damage. As a precaution, it is important for you to recognize the things that can be the cause of kidney infection, along with their treatment
The cause of kidney infection is generally bacteria. These microorganisms can spread from infections in other places, such as the bladder and urethra. Kidney infections can be experienced by anyone, both children and adults.
The typical symptom that appears due to a kidney infection is the discharge of blood or pus in the urine. Other symptoms that follow may include fever, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, lower back pain, painful urination, and an unusual smell of urine.
The Causes of Kidney Infection
Escherichia coli (E. coli) bacteria are rated as the most common cause of kidney infections. These bacteria come from the intestines and can be excreted in the feces. If hygiene is not maintained properly, bacteria can enter through the urinary opening, multiply in the urethra, and cause urinary tract infections (UTIs).
If a UTI is not treated immediately, bacteria can spread and cause a bladder infection. From here, the chance for bacteria to spread to the kidneys is greater.
In addition to lack of hygiene, several factors that can also increase the risk of kidney infection are:
- Using a urinary catheter in the long term
- Having a blockage in the urinary tract, for example due to kidney stones or an enlarged prostate gland
- Experiencing abnormalities in the shape of the urinary tract, such as urethral stricture
- Have a weak immune system, for example due to diabetes, HIV/AIDS, or side effects of taking immune system-suppressing drugs
- Suffered nerve damage around the bladder
- Suffering from a disease that makes it difficult to urinate (urinary retention), such as multiple sclerosis or spina bifida
- Has an abnormality in the valve in the bladder that causes vesicoureteral reflux, which is the return of urine from the bladder to the kidneys
- Undergoing medical procedures, such as urinary tract surgery or cystoscopy examination
How to Treat Kidney Infection
If the lab examination proves that you have a kidney infection caused by bacteria, the doctor will give you antibiotics, such as:
Antibiotics can be taken orally or given in the form of an infusion. Antibiotics taken must be taken according to the doctor's advice, even if the complaint of infection improves after a few days.
In addition to addressing the main causes of kidney infections, doctors also need to address the risk factors that trigger infection, so that kidney infections do not recur. If the trigger for a kidney infection is a urinary tract deformity, an enlarged prostate, or a kidney stone, your doctor may suggest surgery to treat it.
Most of the bacteria that cause kidney infections will disappear after getting the right treatment. However, preventing infection would certainly be better. Ways that can be done are starting from cleaning the intimate organs properly every time you urinate and defecate, drinking enough water, avoiding holding back urination, and getting used to urinating after sexual intercourse.
If you have frequent urinary tract infections or have other conditions that could cause kidney infections, such as an enlarged prostate or kidney stones, you should consult your doctor to find out what treatments you can take to prevent kidney infections.