can an untreated uti cause diarrhea

Mariah Brown

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Mariah Brown

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Welcome to our article on whether an untreated urinary tract infection (UTI) can cause diarrhea. If you’re here, you likely have questions about the potential connection between UTIs and diarrhea and why it’s important to address this issue. In this article, we will discuss the relationship between UTIs and diarrhea, potential causes, and steps you can take to manage these symptoms. Let’s dive in and explore this topic further!

can an untreated uti cause diarrhea

As someone who has experienced the discomfort of a UTI, you might be wondering if there is a connection between an untreated UTI and diarrhea. The short answer is yes, an untreated UTI can cause diarrhea. Understanding the reasons behind this connection is crucial for finding relief. In this article, we will explore the potential causes and offer guidance on managing these symptoms effectively. Now, let’s delve into the details to help you gain a better understanding of how an untreated UTI can lead to diarrhea.

Can a UTI Lead to Diarrhea?

A UTI is an infection that occurs along the urinary tract, which includes the kidneys, bladder, ureters, and urethra. While a UTI primarily affects the urinary system, it can also impact the gastrointestinal system, leading to digestive issues such as diarrhea. The connection between a UTI and diarrhea lies in the proximity of the urinary and digestive systems. When the bacteria causing the UTI spread to the digestive tract, it can disrupt the balance of gut bacteria, resulting in diarrhea.

In addition, the body’s immune response to the UTI can trigger inflammation in the digestive system, leading to diarrhea as a secondary symptom. The exact mechanisms behind how a UTI causes diarrhea are still being studied, but these factors contribute to the link between the two conditions.

Underlying Causes

Several underlying causes contribute to the development of both a UTI and diarrhea:

1. Gut Dysbiosis: When the balance of good and bad bacteria in the gut is disrupted by a UTI, it can cause gastrointestinal symptoms such as diarrhea.

2. Inflammation: The body’s immune response to a UTI can trigger inflammation throughout the body, including the gastrointestinal tract.

3. Antibiotic Use: If you have been prescribed antibiotics to treat your UTI, these medications can disrupt the natural balance of gut bacteria, leading to diarrhea as a side effect.

4. Stress and Anxiety: The discomfort and anxiety associated with a UTI can contribute to digestive disturbances, including diarrhea.

Managing UTI-Related Diarrhea

Here are some tips to manage diarrhea caused by an untreated UTI:

1. Stay Hydrated: Diarrhea can lead to dehydration, so it is important to drink plenty of fluids to stay hydrated. Water, herbal tea, and electrolyte-rich beverages can help replenish lost fluids.

2. Probiotics: Taking probiotic supplements or consuming probiotic-rich foods like yogurt can help restore the balance of gut bacteria and alleviate diarrhea.

3. Maintain a Healthy Diet: Stick to a bland diet that includes easily digestible foods such as bananas, rice, toast, and applesauce. Avoid spicy, fatty, or greasy foods that can exacerbate diarrhea.

4. Over-the-Counter Medications: Over-the-counter anti-diarrheal medications like loperamide can provide temporary relief from diarrhea symptoms. However, it is essential to consult with a healthcare professional before taking any medications.

5. Seek Medical Attention: If diarrhea persists or worsens, it is important to seek medical attention. A healthcare professional can evaluate your symptoms, determine the cause, and prescribe appropriate treatment.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Can an untreated UTI cause chronic diarrhea?

Yes, if left untreated, a UTI can lead to chronic diarrhea. The ongoing infection can disrupt the gut microbiome, leading to persistent digestive symptoms such as diarrhea.

2. Are there any complications associated with untreated UTI-related diarrhea?

Untreated UTI-related diarrhea can lead to complications like dehydration, electrolyte imbalances, and nutrient deficiencies. Seeking medical attention is crucial to prevent these complications.

3. Can stress worsen UTI-related diarrhea?

Yes, stress can exacerbate UTI-related diarrhea. Managing stress through relaxation techniques and self-care activities can help minimize diarrhea symptoms.

4. Are there any home remedies to alleviate UTI-related diarrhea?

While managing diarrhea caused by a UTI, various home remedies can provide relief. These include drinking clear liquids, consuming probiotic-rich foods, and practicing good hygiene to prevent reinfection.

5. Can an untreated UTI cause blood in the stool?

In severe cases, an untreated UTI can lead to complications such as kidney infection. This, in turn, can cause blood in the urine (hematuria) or blood in the stool (melena). It is essential to seek medical attention if you experience these symptoms.


Addressing an untreated UTI is crucial to prevent the development of diarrhea and potential complications. Understanding the connection between UTIs and diarrhea, as well as implementing effective management strategies, can help alleviate symptoms and promote overall well-being. If you have concerns about an untreated UTI causing diarrhea, it is best to consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment. Remember, early intervention is key to resolving both UTI and diarrhea symptoms effectively.

Thank you for reading our comprehensive article on whether an untreated UTI can cause diarrhea. If you found this information helpful, we encourage you to explore our other articles on related topics. Take charge of your health and seek timely medical attention for any concerns you may have.


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