Kidney Infection, Chronic (Pyelonephritis, Chronic)

General Illness Information

Medical Term:
Kidney Infection, Chronic (Pyelonephritis, Chronic)

Common Name: None Specified

Description: Chronic infection of the kidneys, resulting from anatomic abnormalities of the kidneys or the urinary system.

Causes: Chronic pyelonephritis occurs only in patients with major anatomic abnormalities, such as obstructive uropathy, kidney stones, or, most commonly, reflux of urine at the junction of the bladder and ureter.

Prevention:

  • Obtain prompt medical treatment for acute kidney infections, including 2 or more weeks of antibiotic treatment.
  • Don’t discontinue prescribed medication even if symptoms disappear after a few days of treatment.
  • Obtain treatment for any abnormality of the urinary tract that causes infection.

Signs & Symptoms

  • Usually no signs or symptoms, unlike acute kidney infections
  • Symptoms and signs (e. g., fever, flank or abdominal pain) are often vague and inconsistent

Risk Factors

  • History of diabetes mellitus.
  • Vesico-ureteral reflux, in children.
  • Urinary obstruction, such as stones or tumors.

Diagnosis & Treatment

For diagnosis, urinalysis and urine culture; cytoscopy (visual examination of the inside of the urinary bladder by means of a cystoscope, a slender optical instrument with a lighted tip); ultrasound; intravenous pyelogram (IVP). Other special tests may be recommended.

General Measures:

  • Follow your treatment plan carefully. This may not be easy for an illness that causes few symptoms in the early stages.
  • Surgery to relieve obstruction or malformation in the urinary tract, if one exists.

Medications:

Antibiotics for months or years – if ongoing infection is present.

Activity:

No restriction.

Diet:

No restriction.

Possible Complications:

  • Untreated, chronic pyelonephritis can lead to renal failure.
  • Hypertension.

Prognosis

  • Prognosis depends on the state of the kidneys at diagnosis.
  • Early infections, malformations and abnormalities if treated in time will result in excellent prognosis.

Other

‘Nothing Specified’.

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