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Is there a link between irritable bowel syndrome and urinary tract infection?

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Practicing since : 2001
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Hello doctor-- About a week ago, I had 2-3 days of headaches and stomach upset or IBS. Following that, the headaches went and the GI symptoms eased, but more slowly. However, since then, for about 3-4 days, I've had the urge to urinate frequently and my feces was XXXXXXX in color today and once last week (bile?). I started an OTC med for a possible UTI yesterday. It is difficult to know how much it is helping, if at all, and if the two can be related or what they may suggest...Thanks!
Wed, 18 Apr 2012 in Urinary and Bladder Problems
Answered by Dr. Rakhi Tayal 54 minutes later

Thanks for writing to us.

It is difficult to say whether the drug is helping or not without knowing what are you taking.
To confirm the diagnosis, you can get a routine urine examination done which will show pus cells and protein in the urine.
If it is actually a take plenty of fresh cranberry juice.
The relation between IBS and UTI is very unlikely. It seems to be a coincidence only.
You can help reduce the discomfort by taking the following steps:

1. Take a pain-relieving medication.
2. Use a hot-water bottle to ease pain.
3. Drink plenty of water.
4. Avoid coffee, alcohol, and spicy foods, all of which irritate the bladder.
5. Quit smoking. Smoking irritates the bladder and is known to cause bladder cancer

I hope this information has been both informative and helpful for you. If there are additional concerns, I am available for your followups.

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