There are various causes of kidney infection but the most common cause is bacterial invasion of the kidneys.
Infection occurs when bacteria, usually from the digestive tract, cling to the opening of the urethra and eventually travels to the kidneys.
Most infections are caused by the Escherichia (E. coli) bacteria, which normally live in the colon.
When bacteria infect the kidneys and cause inflammation, it is medically known as pyelonephritis (PI-low-nef-ri-tis). This is the most common form of kidney disease.
It can be sudden (acute) or long-term (chronic). Acute uncomplicated pyelonephritis is the sudden development of kidney inflammation. Chronic pyelonephritis is a long-standing infection.
While bacterial invasion of the kidneys is one of the most common causes of kidney infection, there are other conditions which can cause kidney infections. These include the following:
Symptoms of kidney infection can be quite severe, depending on the stage of the infection. Early sign are usually mild, but symptoms tend to progress very quickly. When the disease is in an advanced stage, patients may experience some or all of the following symptoms:
There may also be tenderness on physical examination, which is manifested by pain in the area of the kidneys.
If left untreated, for an extended period of time, kidney infection can scar the kidneys and impair kidney function. The earlier this disease is treated, the better the chances of full recovery. The most common treatment of kidney infection involves the use of antibiotics. This is normally one of the first medications prescribed by a doctor, for the treatment of kidney infection. Antibiotics may not, however, be suitable for everyone, since they can cause allergic reactions in some people.
In addition to antibiotics, patients should ensure that they are getting adequate amounts of essential nutrients to build or boost their immune system... it is the body's first line of defense against infections. If the immune system functions as it should then it might be able to fight off the bacteria that causes kidney infections.
While bacteria are the most common causes of kidney infection, impaired immune system may be the reason why the bacteria are able to flourish. While conditions such as pregnancy, diabetes, cancer, kidney stones, and abnormalities of the urinary tract can lower the body's ability to fight off the bacteria that cause kidney infections, having a strong immune system is the most effective defense against this disease.
Also, drinking adequate amounts of water (and other fluids) can be a simple but effective treatment of kidney infection. Water is an essential component of urine formation, which helps to flush out the urinary system and remove toxins and waste products from the body. Water also helps to prevent the formation of kidney stones, which can cause blockage of the urinary system and result in kidney infection.
Apart from a deficient immune system, failure to drink adequate amounts of water on a daily basis is one of the leading causes of kidney infection. By simply drinking enough water every day can help to minimize the risk of developing kidney infections.