Cystitis - Symptoms & Treatment
Cystitis is the inflammation of the bladder. Usually we use this term to mean an infection causing inflammation of the bladder. The condition primarily affects women, but can affect either sex and all age groups. The symptoms vary from case to case and even in the same individual. A UTI such as cystitis can become a serious health problem if the infection spreads to your kidneys. This is because women have a shorter urethra (the tube that goes from the bladder out of the body) and its opening is located nearer the anus which means that infection can occur more easily. Many women have at least one attack of cystitis in their live some women have frequent attacks. The first time you have cystitis you should see your GP for advice. Children and men should always see their GP if they have cystitis. Cystitis is common in women, but it is less common and a potentially more serious condition for men. For men the cause can be an underlying bladder or prostate infection, an obstruction or tumour, or an enlarged prostate. Cystitis usually begins when bacteria enter the urinary tract through the urethra, the tube through which urine exits your body. Less commonly, bacteria can spread to the bladder from an infection in another part of the body. The usual treatment for cystitis is antibiotics. You can take a number of steps to help prevent cystitis and other UTIs.
Causes of Cystitis
The common Causes of Cystitis :
- Trauma as in "Honeymoon Cystitis" following unaccustomed and rather prolonged or vigorous sexual activity.
- Other types of infection may inflame the bladder.
- Other bacteria may be involved.
- Radiation, eg after radiotherapy to other organs in the pelvis.
- The main cause of cystitis (and other urinary tract infections) is bacteria known as coliform bacteria, which are a common occupant of the bowel.
Symptoms of Cystitis
Some Symptoms of Cystitis :
- Cloudy urine .
- A feeling of pressure in the lower abdomen.
- Burning or pain on passing water.
- Smelly urine.
- Low-grade fever.
- Blood in the urine (hematuria) .
- Frequency of passing water .
- Passing cloudy or strong-smelling urine.
Treatment of Cystitis
- If the symptoms are any more than transient, you should contact your doctor, when next able to, regarding the possibility of antibiotics.
- To some extent alkalising the urine helps to eradicate the germs and also soothe the bladder. You can try using bicarbonate of soda, 5ml (1 tea spoon) in half a glass of water, two or three times a day or one of the over the counter cystitis remedies.
- The best first aid treatment is to drink, drink .
- For similar reasons the folklore remedy is barley water or, these days, cranberry juice.
- Some doctors recommend that you drink lots of water to help flush out the infection, to dilute the urine and reduce the burning sensation. There is no evidence that this is helpful, although drinking at least two litres of fresh water per day is generally good for your health.
- Taking painkillers relieves pain .