Urinary tract infections in men

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Updated: 4/11/2007 2:47 pm
The urinary tract is made up of the kidneys, which filter waste; the ureters (your-REE-ters), which transport urine to the bladder; and the urethra (you-REE-thruh), the tubes through which urine leaves the body. Problems can develop when infectious organisms begin to collect at the opening of the urethra. As they multiply, the urethra becomes infected, a condition called urethritis (you-ree-THRY-tis). Next, bacteria may travel upward to the bladder, causing cystitis (sist-EYE-tiss), or a bladder infection. Without treatment, this infection can progress to the kidneys. A number of factors can cause a urinary tract infection, including an enlarged prostate gland, kidney stones, or anything else that interferes with the normal flow of urine. Diabetes, chronic use of catheters, and a suppressed immune system are other culprits. Symptoms range from painful or burning urination to a frequent need to urinate, a feeling of pressure in the rectum, and a general sense of fatigue. The urine might have a cloudy or bloody tinge. Luckily, most urinary tract infections can be easily treated with antibiotics. A doctor may also advise you to drink extra water or juice, and avoid coffee and alcohol. For more information on urinary tract infections, consult a physician.
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