The risk factors and symptoms of kidney infection are particularly important for women to know about, since women are more at risk of developing them compared to men.

A kidney infection is also known as pyelonephritis or pyelitis which usually refers to a sort of ascending kidney infection that affects the kidneys by way of the urinary tract.

Symptoms of Kidney InfectionThere are known to be certain risk factors that make kidney infection more likely among certain individuals, so that they know to look out for kidney infection symptoms –

  • Being female is considered to be one of the risk factors since these infections are more common among women than men.
  • Also race can be a factor, since white women are four times as likely to experience symptoms of kidney infection as African American women.
  • Structural abnormalities of the urinary tract that cause the urine to flow back up to the urethra may cause kidney infection.
  • Kidney stones greatly increase risk of developing kidney infections because the normal drainage of urine may be impeded and bacteria can build up in the stagnant urine.
  • Insertion of a catheter or urethral stents or other procedures of urine drainage also increase chances of infection.
  • Pregnancy and other conditions that suppress the immune system make a woman more prone to kidney infections.
  • Kidney infection could also be more common among people with spinal cord damage, multiple sclerosis or spina bifida.
  • Those who have diabetes are also more at risk of symptoms of a kidney infection.
  • There is a genetic component also at play because people whose close family members frequently experience kidney infection are more likely to have it themselves.
  • Certain kinds of sexual activity, such as frequent changes in sexual partners use of Spermicide are also considered risk factors for kidney infection.

The most commonly noted symptoms of kidney infection are –


There may be the general feeling of being unwell. Fever and chills could accompany the infection and some women may also note a lack of appetite and some weight loss owing to the infection.


Lower back pain or abdominal pain is one of the most commonly noted symptoms of a kidney infection. Depending upon whether one or both kidneys are impacted by the infection, the pain could be one or both sided.

Urine Changes

The color of urine could change from clear and light to cloudy and dark, and could also be tinged with blood. The smell of the urine will also change, becoming foul smelling. It may become painful to pass urine or there may be a burning sensation.

Also the urge to pass urine could be acute, however very little urine may actually be passed when a woman goes. After having urinated also there is the feeling or urge of wanting to go but with little or no urine to pass.

Digestive symptoms

Symptoms of kidney infection could also include digestive disturbances and some women may experience diarrhea. Also nausea and/or vomiting could be among the symptoms experienced.


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