The classic symptoms of a urinary tract infection ( UTI ) are burning pain and frequent urination. UTIs may not cause these classic symptoms in older adults . Instead, older adults , especially those with dementia, may experience behavioral symptoms such as confusion.
For caregivers, it’s critical to learn about the most common infections in the elderly and their often-elusive signs and symptoms: “Nonspecific symptoms, such as decline in functioning, incontinence , loss of appetite and mental status changes may be the presenting signs of infection,” according to an article in
When left untreated , UTIs can cause serious problems in the elderly , including permanent kidney damage and sepsis, a generalized and potentially life-threatening infection.
A kidney infection is, in essence, a UTI that has spread into the kidneys . While this type of infection is rare, it’s also very dangerous and if you’re experiencing any of the following signs of a kidney infection , you should see a doctor immediately: Upper back or side pain. Fever, shaking or chills.
Sepsis Symptoms Fever and chills. Very low body temperature. Peeing less than usual. Fast heartbeat. Nausea and vomiting. Diarrhea. Fatigue or weakness. Blotchy or discolored skin.
Because our immune system changes as we get older , it responds differently to the infection. Instead of pain symptoms, seniors with a UTI may show increased signs of confusion , agitation or withdrawal.
These can include: feeling dizzy or faint. a change in mental state – such as confusion or disorientation . diarrhoea . nausea and vomiting. slurred speech. severe muscle pain. severe breathlessness . less urine production than normal – for example, not urinating for a day.
They could have: Different sleep-wake patterns. Little appetite and thirst. Fewer and smaller bowel movements and less pee. More pain. Changes in blood pressure, breathing, and heart rate. Body temperature ups and downs that may leave their skin cool, warm, moist, or pale.
There are high mortality rates of around 50%-60% in elderly patients with severe sepsis and septic shock[4,9,73]. The mortality due to severe sepsis in elderly patients is 1.3-1.5 times higher than that in younger cohorts[4,9]. Several studies have found age to be an independent predictor of mortality[4,5,8,9].
There are three stages of sepsis: sepsis, severe sepsis, and septic shock .
If the infection moves upstream to the kidneys, additional symptoms are likely, such as fatigue , weakness or feeling faint , and difficulty walking or thinking clearly. Other symptoms could include a fever of 101 F or greater, shaking and chills, upper back and side pain, and nausea or vomiting.
The strongest connection was seen with urinary tract infection , which was associated with more than three times the increased risk of ischemic stroke within 30 days of infection.
Symptoms of a kidney infection often come on within a few hours. You can feel feverish, shivery, sick and have a pain in your back or side. In addition to feeling unwell like this, you may also have symptoms of a urinary tract infection ( UTI ) such as cystitis.
Kidney pain is felt higher and deeper in your body than back pain . You may feel it in the upper half of your back , not the lower part. Unlike back discomfort, it’s felt on one or both sides, usually under your rib cage. Other symptoms to watch for Fever. Body aches. Tiredness.
Commonly used antibiotics for kidney infections include ciprofloxacin , cefalexin, co-amoxiclav or trimethoprim. Painkillers such as paracetamol can ease pain and reduce a high temperature (fever). Stronger painkillers may be needed if the pain is more severe.