Women contract UTI in the ratio of 30:1 as compared to men owing to shorter urethras. However, men could also develop UTI, risk of which increases with age. Urological abnormalities, STDs, prostatism (a syndrome associated with bladder outlet obstruction) are some of the most common causes of UTI in men. Men rarely get UTIs before the age of 50. However, men above 50 could also develop UTIs frequently. Often, a man could have the infection but may not experience its typical symptoms.
Organisms that cause UTI in men
Normal urine is sterile. UTIs occur when the bacteria from the digestive tract cling to the opening of the urethra and multiply. In 50% of men with UTI, Escheria Coli is the bacterium causing the infection. 25% are known to be caused by gram negative microorganisms and 20% have enterococci, while 5% have other causes. The best way to diagnose UTI is to take a culture of the urine.
Causes of UTI in men- Some Facts
- The reason why men have fewer UTIs compared to women is owing to longer urethras. In women, the urethra-which is a tube through which the urine passes-is rather close to the anus. Transmission of germs is easier due to this.
- In men with enlarged prostate, UTI could occur if a catheter is used.
- An enlarged prostate could also prevent the bladder from emptying out completely. This is one of the main reasons for UTI in men.
- Urethral strictures or scar tissue caused by trauma, surgery etc can also lead to bladder infection in men.
- In younger men, kidney stones could cause UTI.
- Uncircumcised men could develop UTI owing to not cleaning the foreskin properly.
Types of UTI in males
As in women, UTI could be of different types in men:
- Infection of the prostate gland is called Prostaitis
- STD led urinary infection of the Urethra is called Urethritis
- Cystitis is the urinary infection in older patients
- Kidney infection or pyelonephritis is a serious infection more common in women than in men. If left untreated, it could lead to various complications.
Symptoms of UTI in men
- Burning when urinating
- Pus at the end of the penis
- The need to urinate frequently, especially at night
- Pain and discomfort in abdomen and back-mid back pain is more common in case of kidney infection.
- Fever and chills
- Bloody discharge
How to prevent UTI in men
- Drink lots of water- at least 8-10 glasses a day. Also drink sugar-free and caffeine-free beverages, herbal teas, fresh fruit juices etc. Cranberry juice is one of the best remedies for UTI prevention in both men and women.
- Urinate when you feel the urge-do not hold back the urine. Empty your bladder completely each time.
- Homosexual men must especially practice safe sex through use of condoms.
- Switch to non-latex condoms as latex condoms could increase UTI risk.
- Always urinate after sexual intercourse. This helps flush out the bacteria. This is true for men and women both.
- Wash under the foreskin in case you are uncircumcised.
Uti treatment without antibiotics
- Drink plenty of fluids. Drink fresh, sugar-free cranberry juice at the onset of symptoms.
- Take acidophilus tablets or powder. This will help supplement the urinary tract with good bacteria which can fight the infection-causing microorganisms.
- Drink diluted Apple Cider Vinegar every few hours. This will make the urine acidic and kill the germs. Urinate frequently to eliminate the germs.
- Take garlic pills if you wish to avoid urinary tract infection antibiotics. Garlic has antimicrobial properties that can eliminate infections quickly.
- Take Alka Seltzer pills to ease pain and also make your system more alkaline. You can take 2 tablets in 8oz glass of water.
- Take lot of probiotic foods like sauerkraut, miso soups or kefir. These good bacteria fight the harmful bacteria. Eat plenty of homemade or store-brought plain yogurt.
UTI in men may not be as frequent as it is in women. However, UTI should not be ignored and ust be treated promptly. If above remedies do not show results, you might need antibiotics. Take the complete dose although your symptoms will ease in the first 24 hours after starting.