URINARY TRACT INFECTIONS IN CHILDREN

2018-03-01 06:00
PHOTO: suppliedDr Rashinta Moodley

PHOTO: suppliedDr Rashinta Moodley

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A URINARY tract infection (UTI) is caused by bacteria that has entered the urinary system. This commonly occurs in the lower urinary tract, ie. the urinary canal and bladder, although infections can progress to the upper tract and affect the kidneys.

Obstructions in the urinary tract can also increase the risk of infection, while a weakened immune system and urinary structures that are abnormally developed from birth can also put your child at risk. Chronic constipation is another risk factor.

The most common symptoms of a UTI include abdominal pain, a burning sensation during urination or urinating more frequently. In some cases, urine may appear bloody, cloudy, or dark and have a strong smell.

Commonly, children present with a fever or diarrhoea and vomiting. Children can also present with wetting themselves or wetting the bed.

If you think that your child may have a urinary tract infection, it is important to seek professional help as soon as possible as infections can worsen if they are left untreated.

In most cases, UTIs can be treated with the use of antibiotics. UTIs that occur recurrently need to be investigated further as this can result in damage to the kidney.

For more information on this and other childhood concerns, please contact Dr Rashinta Moodley — specialist paediatrician and paediatric nephrologist on 031 537 4125 or 031 492 2111.

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