Question: What is the most effective way to stop recurrence of urinary tract infection and prevention of other related symptoms? The patient is 63 years old, having twice or thrice recurrent UTI, mild fever and headache. He has taken all the required antibiotics. What is the home remedy for above ailment?
Answer: If two or more than two episodes of urinary tract infection occur within a span of 6 months, the condition is termed as recurrent urinary tract infection. Recurrent UTI is associated with many other conditions such as diabetes mellitus, urethral stricture etc.The most common microorganisms responsible for recurrent UTI are E. coli and staphylococcus bacteria.
Women are more vulnerable to recurrent urinary tract infection than males, partly due to the anatomy of their genitourinary organs. The symptoms are increased frequency of urination, burning urine, increased frequency at night, passage of blood in urine and tenderness over bladder area. Since recurrence of urinary tract infection causes increased morbidity and health care expenditure in persons of all ages, prevention and treatment are important measures before the condition worsens.
Causes Of Recurrent Urinary Tract Infection
Often recurrent UTI is more common in women as compared to men.This is because of anatomical structure of female urinary tract. Women have short urethra (tube through which urine is voided out from vagina). The urethra is exposed to fecal matter as it has close proximity to the anus. Feces contain many types of bacteria which may get easy access while cleaning after each bowel movement.
Predisposing factors for recurrent urinary tract infection:
- Unhygienic condition, especially in women can greatly impact her urinary tract. For example the infection can spread from a soiled toilet seat if she sits on it. Wiping in wrong direction after bowel movement may lead to frequent urinary tract infections.
- Sexual intercourse is often responsible for UTI, even though in majority of cases it is not a sexually transmitted disease.
- Urogenital anomalies like Phimosis, stricture urethra, cystocele.
- Malignancy of prostate and other renal organs.
- Steroids and immunosuppressant drugs.
- Instrumentation and catheterization
- Diabetes mellitus
- Sexual perversions
Investigation advised: Routine urine examination, urine culture and sensitivity. X-ray of urinary tract and sonography of urinary tract. Complete blood count and ESR.
Home Remedies To Stop Recurrent UTI
Finding and treating the underlying cause is most important to treat chronic and acute urinary tract infection. In sexually active women with recurrent UTI, the following measures are helpful in prevention of infection. Women should always maintain good perineal hygiene. Perineum is the portion between vagina and anus. The risk of recurrent UTI decreases if she empties her bladder before and after intercourse.
Some of the home remedies are:
- Drink plenty of water; urinate frequently without storing for a long time. Water will flush out bacteria and less storage will reduce the chance of multiplication of bacteria.
- Take shower and not tub baths as there is risk of infection if the tub is used by many people.
- Half a glass of barley water, mixed with buttermilk and lime juice is an excellent diuretic. It helps to curtail recurrent episodes of UTI. If you have suffered UTI once, drink this concoction regularly for few months to eradicate the germs and prevent its reoccurrence.
- Regular use of barley water is helpful.
- Juice of radish leaves is valuable; a cup of the juice should be given for three weeks if there is history of UTI.
- Cucumber juice and cranberry juice are also effective in treating recurrent urinary tract infection.
- While wiping after bowel movement, the action should be from front to back and not the reverse. It will prevent the bacteria from anus entering into the vagina.