INFLUENZA IN URGENT CARE SETTING Influenza is a viral infection that create infection in respiratory system (nose, throat and lungs). Influenza is a contagious infectious disease caused by RNA viruses Influenza, commonly called the flu, is not the same as the stomach “flu” viruses that cause diarrhea and vomiting. Influenza can have serious complication particularly in higher risk group. People with chronic illness and people with suppress immune system (cancer, HIV, or taking immune suppress medication) are at serious risk of developing complications. Children, pregnant women and seniors are also at risk of developing complications. Complication can include pneumonia which can be deadly especially the young children and seniors. Annual vaccination is the best defense against flu. How one can get infected with flu? When a person coughs or sneezes, aerosols containing the virus are created. Influenza can also infect a person if you come in contact with contaminated surfaces or nasal secretion. Frequent hand washing reduces the risk of infection. Flu Symptoms Runny nose, sore throat, and headache could be initial symptoms of flu. What distinguishes flu and common cold usually is that cold symptoms usually develop gradually whereas influenza (flu) symptoms. Flu symptoms are usually more severe than usual cold. People with flu often have fever over 100 F. Headache, body ache, fatigue, generalized weakness, nasal congestion and dry cough are common symptoms of influenza (flu). When to see a doctor Taking antiviral drugs within first 48 hours of illness may reduce the length of the illness and help prevent serious problems. People who are at risk of complication (chronic illness, suppress immune system, elderly, young children and pregnant women should be evaluated by physician in order to reduce the risk of complications.

Urinary Tract Infections One of the most common conditions seen in urgent care centers is urinary tract infections. The urinary tract consists of the Kidneys, the Bladder, the Ureters (the tube that connects the kidney to the bladder), and the Urethra (the tube that connects the bladder to the outside). An infection anywhere along this tract is called a urinary tract infection. The most common infection is the bladder infection, but the infection can occur in the kidneys as well. Kidney infections are usually more severe than bladder infections and require much more rigorous treatment. Bacteria usually cause urinary tract infections. The bacteria that cause these infections are usually the same ones found in the feces and the most common one is E. coli. These bacteria gain access to the urinary tract and can travel all the way up to the kidneys. These bacteria travel through the urethra (the tube that connects the bladder to the outside) to the bladder. Most people start having symptoms once the bacteria has reached the bladder. Some people do not feel the symptoms until the bacteria have travelled even further all the way up to the kidneys. Women are more susceptible to bladder infections than men and the reason is that women have shorter urethras and thus the bacteria have less distance to travel to get to the bladder. The factors that increase the chances of getting urinary tract infections include: having sexual intercourse, poor hygiene, not drinking enough fluids, being a diabetic, being pregnant, having an enlarged prostate, having kidney stones, and having urinary tract abnormalities such as prolapses, fistulas and tumors. Symptoms of urinary tract infections include burning upon urination, painful urination, and frequent urination. There may also be pain and tenderness in the lower abdominal area for bladder infections and pain and tenderness in the flank abdominal area for the more severe kidney infection. Some people may have blood in the urine as well as cloudy and malodorous urine. There may be a sensation of having to urinate frequently without much urine at all coming out during urinations. There may even be an associated fever, chills and even nausea and vomiting. In addition to these symptoms, urinary tract infections are diagnosed by urinalysis and urine cultures. Urinalysis results are immediate and are usually done by dipstick and examination of the urine under microscope. Urine culture may take a few days to show if there is any bacterial growth. Because of this, your physician may feel it is necessary to start antibiotic treatment even before the results of the urine culture become available. The most common antibiotic treatments for urinary tract infections are Cipro, Macrobid, Macrodantin, Bactrim, and Septra.


Urinary Tract Infection or UTI:

Urinary tract infection occurs when bacteria enter body’s urinary tract. Urinary tract consists of Kidneys, Bladder, Ureters (the tubes that connect the kidney to the bladder), and Urethra (the tube that carries the urine to the outside). Majority of urinary tract infections occur in the bladder but they can also occur in the kidneys or anywhere else along the urinary tract.

Causes of Urinary Tract Infections:

Bacteria typically get into the urinary tract through the urethra, the tube that connects the bladder to the outside. These bacteria that get into the urethra are typically the same bacteria found in the stool. Once they enter the urinary tract through the urethra, they can travel up to the bladder and even all the way up to the kidneys. For most people symptoms start once the bacteria are in the bladders. For others, they may not feel any symptoms until the bacteria have travelled all the way up to the kidneys.

Women usually get more bladder infections than men and this is because the length of the urethra is shorter in women than in men and the bacteria have to travel a shorter distance to get to the bladder.

Some of the common things that predispose people to getting urinary tract infections are:

  • Having sex
  • Not drinking enough fluids
  • Being a Diabetic
  • Being Pregnant (Women)
  • Having an Enlarged Prostate (Men)
  • Having Kidney Stones
Symptoms of Urinary Tract Infections:
Some of the symptoms of Urinary Tract Infections are the following:
  • Burning during urination
  • Pain during urination
  • Having the urge to urinate frequently
  • Urine that is cloudy
  • Urine that has a bad odor
  • Fever
  • Feeling nauseated or even vomiting
  • Pain in the lower abdomen area
  • Pain in the flank (side) area of abdomen
This Is What You Should Do:

If you think you have a urinary tract infection and are having any of these symptoms, call your doctor right away. If you are unable to reach your doctor then go to the nearest Urgent Care Center or Emergency Room to be seen and evaluated. Your urine will be checked and cultured for any possible infections and if needed, appropriate antibiotics therapy will be started.