A bladder infection, also called cystitis, occurs when the bladder or lower urinary tract is contaminated with disease-causing germs. Most often, bacteria is the cause. Women tend to get bladder infections more frequently than men.
For an evaluation or treatment of a bladder infection in the Sacramento region, speak with an experienced Dignity Health gynecologist. We provide a range of effective treatment options to help you get back to life without discomfort. For the services you need, Find a Doctor at Dignity Health.
Bladder Infection Causes
Bladder infections are often caused when bacteria enters the bladder through the urethra. In most cases, your body disposes of bacteria when you urinate. However, some forms of bacteria get stuck to the walls of urethra or bladder, resulting in an infection.
Women are more likely to develop a bladder infection after sexual intercourse or by using a diaphragm for birth control.
Other things that make you more likely to develop bladder infections are:
- Urinary catheter in your bladder
- Blockage of the urethra or bladder
- Enlarged prostate or narrowed urethra
- Loss of bowel control
- Older age
- Not fully emptying the bladder (urinary retention)
- Surgical procedures that involve the urinary tract
- Not moving for long periods of time, such as after surgery
Bladder Infection Symptoms
Most bladder infections are caused by E. coli, a type of bacteria normally found in the intestines but also seen in contaminated water and foods.
Common signs and symptoms of bladder infections include:
- Bloody or cloudy urine
- Strong smelling urine
- Pain or burning with urination
- Pressure or cramping in the lower middle abdomen or back
- Frequent urination, even after the bladder has been emptied
If you experience these symptoms, speak with a Dignity Health gynecologist at one of our six Sacramento-area hospitals for the right diagnosis.
Trusted Bladder Infection Treatment at Dignity Health
When you visit a Dignity Health gynecologist with an uncomfortable bladder infection, they will assess your symptoms and likely order a urine test, or urinalysis. This test shows any white and red blood cells, bacteria, and certain chemicals such as nitrates that may be present in your urine.
Our treatment for a bladder infection may often include antibiotics (to help prevent the spread of infection to the kidneys), along with medications to ease discomfort.
Drinking plenty of water and, in some cases, cranberry juice (which contains ascorbic acid) can also help flush out bacteria that cause bladder infections. At Dignity Health, our gynecologists offer advanced, reliable care to evaluate and treat bladder infections in Sacramento and the surrounding areas.