ZocdocAnswersCan urinary tract infections not heal?

Question

Can urinary tract infections not heal?

Is it possible to have a urinary tract infection that just doesn't heal? I have followed the treatment course that my doctor gave me, and the symptoms are mostly gone - but it seems like there's a low level irritation that won't go away. Does this mean that the infection is stlil there?

Answer

Urinary tract infections are one of the most common reasons for people to seek medical advice. The doctors who will be well qualified to discuss this issue with you include your primary care doctor. Urinary tract infections are caused when bacteria get into the urine and grow there, causing pain with urination, frequent urination, and bladder cramping. These symptoms are caused because the lining of the bladder becomes inflamed by the infection. Most urinary infections resolve after a short course of oral antibiotics. However, sometimes the bacteria are resistant to the antibiotic and are not entirely cleared. Another possibility is that the inflammation of the bladder was simply quite severe and that it will take a period of time for the inflammation to go away completely, even though the infection has cleared. Regardless, a repeat analysis of a urine specimen is probably needed to sort out what is going on. Rarely, a urine infection can trigger chronic cystitis, or chronic bladder pain, which is difficult to resolve and may require long term treatment. As always the diagnosis and the management of your particular concern will require a physical examination by your personal physician. Setting up an office visit with your primary care doctor if symptoms persist is advised.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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