Cystitis is an
inflammation of the bladder (an organ which stores urine before it is passed
out of the body).
Cystitis is usually caused by bacteria that
enter the bladder through the urethra. These bacteria can later even spread the
infection to the kidneys.
Cystitis can affect both men and women and
people of all age groups. It more commonly affects women because their urethra
is shorter and closer to the anus. About 20-40% women might have experienced
cystitis sometime during their lifetime.
Women are more likely to get an infection after
sexual intercourse or when using a diaphragm for contraception. Menopause also
increases the risk for a urinary tract infection. Incomplete evacuation of the
bladder due to enlarged prostate (in men) or pregnancy can also cause cystitis.
person with cystitis usually experiences pain or burning sensation while
urinating, increased frequency and urgency to urinate, fever and lower back or
abdominal pain. The urine may be foul smelling and appear cloudy or opaque.
The diagnosis of cystitis is primarily based on
signs and symptoms. Urinalysis and urine culture help confirm the diagnosis and
decide which antibiotic is best suitable to clear the infection. In case of
repeated infections, the doctor may advice an x-ray or ultrasonography of the
bladder and kidneys.
Oral antibiotics are recommended to treat
cystitis so as to prevent the infection from spreading to the kidneys. Besides
this, painkillers and medicines to relieve the burning pain can be used. The
patient is advised to drink plenty of fluids, especially water to flush out the
germs from the system.