Kids and bladder infections

Can kids get bladder infections?

Yes.  1 in 10 girls get a bladder infection before age 16.  Only 3% of boys do.  Boy babies under 6 months are more likely to get a urinary tract infection (UTI) than girls.  After that age, the penis lengthens and bacteria from the rectum are less likely to make their way up to the bladder.

Symptoms of a UTI are

  • fever or
  • urinary symptoms — pain with urination, urinating more often than normal or having “accidents” after being potty trained.

A urine sample will be obtained. A dipstick test of the urine gives a snapshot, but a culture gives more information.   If there are more than 100,000 colonies of bacteria grown out of the urine in a lab, a UTI will be diagnosed.

40% of kids with a first UTI have some degree of vesicoureteral reflux which means the urine is getting hung up on valves and unable to flow down to the bladder and out.   (Kind of like a lake with stagnant water can get scum on top).  Additional tests may be needed to diagnose reflux which, if severe, may require surgery. Antibiotics treat the infection.

Untreated UTIs put the patient at risk for kidney damage.

My son once asked what are the most important parts of the body.  I answered

1.  Heart (for without that you are indeed dead).

2.  Brain (for without that you are unaware of your surroundings).

3.  The kidneys as they keep everything in balance.

Hope this helps.

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About drlesliegreenberg

I have been practicing as a family physician for over 20 years--as both an educator of physicians and clinician. From infancy to the elderly, I perform obstetrics and general medicine. I love my career and am passionate about my field of knowledge and my patients. Follow me on Facebook at Leslie Md Greenberg Medical Disclaimer The content of this website is provided for general informational purposes only and is not intended as, nor should it be considered a substitute for, professional medical advice. Do not use the information on this website for diagnosing or treating any medical or health condition. If you have or suspect you have a medical problem, promptly contact your professional healthcare provider.
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