All Confused – Urinary Tract Infection

thumb-confusion-clip-art-440303When we’re younger we learn the typical symptoms of a urinary tract infection (UTI). Burning, frequent urge to urinate, cloudy urine, pelvic pain, and sometimes fever usually accompany a UTI.

As we age, these symptoms can be quite different. Confusion is a common symptom. Yet confusion is such a nonspecific symptom, it is often misinterpreted. The person with the confusion or those around them may attribute the confusion to lack of sleep, stress, a cold, early dementia changes, or other things.

So, the point of this blog post is to help us all think of infection, and specifically UTI, when confusion occurs in someone over middle age.

Other symptoms of a UTI can include generally not feeling well (very nonspecific), more frequent urination, new-onset incontinence, and lower abdominal pain.

If a UTI extends beyond the urethra and bladder, the lower/mid back can also hurt. This can be an indication the kidneys are involved and could indicate a more severe infection. A fever does not always accompany a UTI as we age.

Any of these changes in wellbeing are worthy of a check up to include a urinalysis (check of a urine sample for bacteria).

There are several changes that occur with aging that increase risk for UTI in both women and men. For women, after menopause, atrophy of the vagina and changes in the urethra make it easier for bacteria to grow and move from one place to the other. Diabetes, incontinence, bladder prolapse (drop down), and use of a catheter also increase risk for UTI. In men, an enlarged prostate that causes any blockage of the urinary tract also increases risk.

Note, sometimes people can have bacteria in their urine and not have an infection. Your physician can determine if treatment of any bacteria that is found is warranted.

So please don’t ignore new onset confusion. Remember to check for a UTI if you experience these symptoms.

For more information, contact us at or call 410-472-5078.

Biblical Application

Confusion as a primary symptom of UTI makes me think of other aspects of life that aren’t as they initial appear.

How often does something happen in your life, and you make assumptions about the why, how, what of that event? You then start making plans and reacting based on those assumptions.

How often do we see only part of the picture and make wrong assumptions about the missing parts?

Have your assumptions ever been wrong?

Have you ever been embarrassed or even hurt someone because of those misguided assumptions?

These are the sorts of lessons we often learn the hard way.

Religion is much the same.  Some people looking in from the outside only see part of what God has in store for them.  One or two views of very human Christians not doing the right thing can give a skewed picture.  God’s grace is misunderstood.  Beliefs are created that aren’t founded in Biblical truth.

So how can we focus more on truth and test our assumptions before acting on them?

1 John 4:1 ESV

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Proverbs 18:2 ESV

A fool takes no pleasure in understanding, but only in expressing his opinion.

Proverbs 25:8 ESV

Do not hastily bring into court, for what will you do in the end, when your neighbor puts you to shame?

Matthew 7:1 ESV

“Judge not, that you be not judged.

John 8:32 NLT

“And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”

Give it all to God and ask him to first help you see the truth and then paint the accurate picture.




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