Urine infections, or urinary tract infections, occur when bacteria becomes trapped in the urethra or the tubes that carry urine from the bladder to the kidneys, called the ureters. In most cases, urine infections require medical treatment to prevent the spread of the infection to the bladder or kidneys.
To kill the bacteria that causes urinary tract infections, doctors prescribe oral antibiotics, which are typically taken for 3 to 7 days. Choices popular amongst physicians for urinary tract infections are amoxicillin, cephalosporins, doxycycline, and sulfa drugs.
Because urine infections typically result in pain and the frequent urge to urinate, doctors often prescribe oral medication to relieve symptoms while antibiotics work to treat the underlying cause of the infection. The most common medicine used for this purpose is pyridium.
In some cases, doctors prescribe an additional medication, such as ascorbic acid, to decrease the output of bacteria in urine.
The elderly or people with kidney stones or recent urinary surgery sometimes require hospitalization in order to treat the infection. Once admitted, patients receive fluids and antibiotics intravenously until the infection clears.
If urine infections occur repeatedly over a period of 6 months to 2 years, doctors often perform X-rays to determine if a structural irregularity of the tract is the cause. When this is the cause, physicians perform surgery to widen the ureters.