Millions of people including children and adults worldwide are affected by Diabetes. Apart from hampering the quality of life and becoming a lifelong difficulty, diabetes malso claims about 1,78,000 lives each.
“Diabetes can give you frequent urinary tract infections. Sometimes, it can even get complicated and may involve upper tracks, leading to infection of kidney. This may ultimately lead to renal failure. In uncontrolled diabetes, Urinary Tract Infections are difficult to treat,” says Dr. Rajeev Sood, HOD of Urology at RML Hospital, New Delhi.
“India is the diabetic capital of the world, and most of the patients have a risk of getting Urinary Infection. This risk increases more if diabetes remains uncontrolled. The UTI can also lead to kidney infections, if left untreated, and can be fatal. The most common infecting organism in UTI is E. coli and in severe cases, there may be fungal infections too. Therefore, the treatment for this involves control of diabetes followed by antibiotics,” he said.
What are the symptoms of UTI?
Dr. Sood said, the most common symptoms of UTI are:
- Polyuria- if you’re having frequent urges to urinate
- Polydipsia- a feeling of extreme thirstiness
- Polyphagia- Excessive hunger
Other symptom in diabetes patients may include a sudden loss of weight, implying that diabetes is not controlled. If there is a burning sensation along with fever, you should immediately consult a doctor, says Dr Sood.
The symptoms of urinary tract infection may include frequent urination, pain, or burning with urination, and change in color of urine.
- Women may complain of an increased sensation of pressure above their pubic bone.
- Men may feel fullness in the rectum.
- Some other additional symptoms may occur, including nausea, back pain, and frequent episodes of high-grade fever.
- Because women have shorter urethras, they are more susceptible to UTIs than men.
Diabetes is a common and significant reason behind the risk of getting recurrent urinary infections in both men and women.
Glucose is the source of energy for cells. When our body breaks down food, glucose starts entering the bloodstream. A hormone called insulin which is produced by the pancreas must be present for the glucose to enter the cells.
Moreover, diabetes causes insulin resistance and without enough insulin, glucose remains in the blood. The presence of extra glucose in the bloodstream can increase the risk of several diseases including cardiovascular disease, stroke, chronic kidney disease, foot ulcers, damage to the eyes, diabetic ketoacidosis, and even urinary tract infections.
What is the correlation between UTIs and diabetes?
There is a correlation between urinary tract infections and diabetes. Diabetes may worsen the urological conditions as it can interrupt blood flow and compromise nervous sensory and motor functions in the body.
Also, diabetes can impact the function of bladder. As a result, urine stays in the bladder for a longer period and becomes a breeding ground for bacteria.
According to research findings, these infections become critical and have worse outcomes for people who have type 2 diabetes.
Take these precautions to prevent urinary tract infections if you have diabetes:
- Drink enough water every day
- Keep your blood sugar level under control
- Keep your private parts clean
- Avoid using public toilets
- Do not hold your urine for prolonged intervals
- Manage diabetes to stay safe from UTIs and other related problems.