• Questions to ask your Doctor
  • Choose Quality Care

Kidney Infection and Bladder Infection

Kidney Infection and Bladder Infection may be sometimes termed urinary tract infection (UTI) because the kidney, bladder and urethra are part of the urinary tract system. Your physician will need to complete a thorough investigation to differentiate between the two because symptoms may be similar and a kidney infection may result in kidney failure, blood poisoning and other complications that may be fatal, if left untreated properly in a timely fashion.  

UTI Symptoms

The difference in symptoms may not be prevalent or distinguishable to the individual. The symptoms are often identified as urinary tract infection symptoms. The core difference between symptoms is that people with bladder infection may tend to experience a burning sensation during urination whereas people with a kidney infection may be inclined to experience more severe pain. Others with a kidney infection may simply experience flu like symptoms. Some people with a bladder infection may not experience symptoms.

Identifying the Cause

Bacteria from the bowel are a common cause of kidney infection. Identifying the type of bacteria assists in identifying the appropriate antibiotic to use in treatment. Still, people with select conditions may be  linked to a Kidney Infection. Based on the interpretation of this research, this factor may add more complexity to the diagnosis.  For example, people with kidney stones are at a greater risk for kidney infection when compared to the general population. An ultrasound may be ordered to screen for kidney stones if initial diagnostic tests suggest kidney infection. The problem with an ultrasound is that a condition known as UPJ Obstruction may appear to look like kidney stones in an Ultrasound. For this reason, people who may have a kidney infection may  seek out advanced tests when they feel they need to. Other population groups that may have an increased risk for kidney infection include: people with a family history of kidney disease or failure, stones in the bladder or ureters, select birth defects (such as certain UPJ Obstructions), benign prostatic hypertrophy, and abdominal or pelvic cancer masses.  

UTI Treatments

The vast majority of Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs) involve only the urethra and bladder. When bacteria in the bladder back up into the ureters and kidneys, a kidney infection occurs. This progression is dangerous for anyone who does not receive proper treatment in time. Generally speaking, kidney infections are curable for the vast majority with timely oral or intravenous antibiotic treatment.

It is important to recognize that medications and medical procedures are associated with benefits and risks that should be discussed with your physician. It is important to recognize that all information contained on this website cannot be considered to be specific medical diagnosis, medical treatment, or medical advice. As always, you should consult with a physician regarding any medical condition.