Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are
common in older women and men. Factors that make older adults more likely to
develop UTIs include:
- An immune system that isn't as strong as when the person was younger.
- A reduced ability to control urination and bowel
movements (incontinence), which increases the chance of getting bacteria into
the urinary tract.
- A hospital stay or living in a long-term care
center, where the person may have a urinary catheter inserted, making bladder
infections more likely.
- Problems with the bladder dropping down out
of its normal position (bladder prolapse or
cystocele). When this happens, the bladder cannot
empty completely, making infections more likely.
- Lack of
estrogen in women who have gone through menopause.
Lack of estrogen may allow bacteria that can cause UTIs to grow more easily in
urethra and cause an infection in the
- In men, partial blockage of the urinary tract by an
- Other conditions, such
diabetes, lack of activity, poor hygiene, or problems
- Use of medicines that can cause difficulty
urinating or a complete inability to urinate. If you think your medicine may be
causing urination problems, talk to your doctor.
Older adults also are more likely to have conditions that
complicate UTIs, such as a lower resistance to infection. They may require more
thorough evaluation and longer antibiotic treatment than young adults who have
Urinary Tract Infections in Teens and Adults