Infections of the urinary system are common. The age group between two months and two years is the most at risk.
Girls are affected much more often than boys. This is because the female urethra, the small passage that leads from the bladder where the urine is stored to the exterior, is much shorter. Infection commonly comes from the outside.
The child may have a sudden onset of fever, perhaps with shivers or a chill feeling. The temperature may rise rapidly up to 40.3 deg C (104.5 F). but it is usually lower.
There is an intense desire to pass urine, and when this happens only a minute amount may be passed. This gives little relief, and the urge to do this again and again occurs.
Irritability and vomiting may occur. There is a lack of appetite. Often there is sweating, a paleness in complexion, and in severe cases the child may become prostrate. Often the urine is cloudy, and pus may be present.
Infections of the urinary tract are very common. Indeed, although acute cases are quite common, many children and youngsters (particularly girls) have germs present without any symptoms showing.
Copious fluid given often is a good starting point for treatment. Bed rest and a calm atmosphere are necessary. With acute cases medical advice is necessary.
Medication is often given, and it may be necessary to prolong this, especially if the condition is recurrent, which it often is. Unless completely removed from the tract, these infections may produce a long-term kidney disease which can be serious.