Notes from Nursing
A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of the kidney, ureter, urethra or bladder. Symptoms may include pain or burning with urination, flank pain, confusion, frequency of urination, foul odor to urine, or cloudy urine. Fever, chills and blood in the urine may be present. It is important to properly diagnose urinary tract infections (UTIs) prior to starting treatment due to the increased resistance from improper use of antibiotics. Our clinic physicians have asked that we have at least 3 symptoms prior to requesting a urinalysis (UA) due to frequent negative UAs. Often times a UA may indicate a UTI, but after receiving the culture we find the specimen was actually contaminated and the patient does not have a UTI. Other times we find residents are colonized with certain bacteria that will always be present in the body without causing an active infection. Measures to prevent UTIs include increasing fluid intake, proper hygiene and wiping from front to back.