Common Infection That Causes Pain During Urination

A urinary tract infection (UTI) is an infection of the urinary tract that causes pain, burning and painful urination. More than 50% of women will have at least one UTI in their lifetime.

Even though UTIs are common, they are uncomfortable and can greatly impact your daily life. At Penn State Health, our team is here to help. We will work quickly to diagnose and treat your UTI. Our goal is to help you get immediate relief and to work together to prevent UTIs from recurring.

The experts at Penn State Health have extensive experience in diagnosing and treating UTIs. We isolate the bacteria causing the infection using a urine test, which allows us to quickly determine the best antibiotic for treatment. Once we have determined the bacteria causing the problem, our team will start you on an antibiotic immediately to help the infection from spreading to the kidneys or bladder.

In severe cases, we collaborate closely with our Urology colleagues throughout Penn State Health to provide comprehensive urologic care.


If you or a loved one are struggling with urinary issues, Penn State Health is here to help. During your appointment, we’ll request a urine sample and possibly order bloodwork. We will review your medical history, discuss any medications you are on and if you have any known drug allergies.

Depending on the severity of your symptoms, you may also need a scan or ultrasound of your abdomen and kidneys.

Antibiotics are successful at treating UTIs in a majority of cases. Patients typically begin to feel symptom relief the same day. In rare cases, hospitalization for IV antibiotics and fluids might be necessary. We encourage our patients to drink a lot of water to help flush out the infection.

Recurrent UTIs can be an issue for women in particular. For patients with frequent UTIs, our team will review additional treatment options with you, such as taking a single dose of an antibiotic after sexual contact or having a short supply of antibiotics to begin as soon as symptoms appear.

Symptoms, Diagnosis and Outlook

Symptoms of UTIs can include:

  • Blood in urine
  • Cloudy urine with a strong smell
  • Fever
  • Lower abdomen pressure, bloating and discomfort
  • Needing to urinate again immediately after bladder is empty
  • Pain in pelvic area
  • Strong urge to urinate frequently

If your physician suspects you have a UTI, they will order a urine test to determine if your symptoms are being caused by a bacterial infection. If so, your doctor will prescribe an antibiotic to help get rid of the infection. Severe UTIs can require several weeks of antibiotics.

Most patients with UTIs recover completely within one week to 10 days. If you are having frequent UTIs or continued pain during urination, let your physician know so they can order more in-depth testing.

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Why Choose Penn State Health for Care

The experts at Penn State Health are committed to providing quick diagnostics and treatment options for our UTI patients. We know UTIs are painful and can impact your daily life, and we are committed to helping you feel better and to preventing the UTI from recurring. Our team is also dedicated to furthering research and clinical trials on UTIs in collaboration with Penn State College of Medicine.

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