MRSA Kidney Infection (Pyelonephritis)
Pyelonephritis is an infection of the urinary tract that involves the kidney. Kidney infections are concerning because kidneys filter the blood, placing bacteria in direct communication with the bloodstream.
- High fevers are common.
- Patients often appear quite ill.
- Patients often shake uncontrollably; this is termed rigors. Rigors occur when fevers spike, and are often found in association with bacteria entering the bloodstream.
- Urinary symptoms, which include pain, burning and frequency of urination may or may not be present. Urinary symptoms occur secondary to bladder irritation, usually because the bladder itself is infected. Kidney infections are not synonymous with bladder infections; therefore, urinary symptoms may be absent.
- Other symptoms may include back pain, weakness, body aches and fatigue.
The diagnosis of pyelonephritis is determined clinically via the history and physical, along with the aid of diagnostic testing.
- Urinalysis is microscopic evaluation of the urine. The presence of white blood cells (fight infection), red blood cells (infection causes microscopic bleeding), and bacteria provide evidence for an infection.
- Urine is subsequently sent to the lab for testing. Success enables you to know the exact bacteria causing the infection, and which antibiotics will best treat the infection.
- Blood cultures are often obtained. Kidneys filter the blood, and bacteria commonly seep into the bloodstream. A sample of blood is sent to the lab fortesting. Success enables you to know the exact bacteria causing the infection, and which antibiotics will best treat the infection.