Infecciones del tracto urinario

¿Es una infección urinaria o...?

Cómo saber si tiene una infección urinaria o una ETS, una infección por hongos y más. Además, ¡cómo Dr. B puede ayudarlo a acceder al tratamiento de la infección urinaria en línea!
Una mujer con pantalones rosas y un top blanco se arrastra por un frondoso seto verde en busca de algo

Key Points:

  1. A urinary tract infection (UTI) is any infection in the urinary system, including the urethra, bladder, ureters and kidneys. 
  2. UTI symptoms include pain or burning with urination, a frequent need to pee, blood in the urine or pelvic pain. Other conditions that affect the urinary and pelvic area can have similar symptoms, making it hard to tell what’s going on.
  3. Without treatment, some conditions can cause serious long-term complications. So it’s important to seek care if you have concerns.

UTIs happen when bacteria travel into the urinary system. Your body can usually fight off bacteria. But sometimes, the immune system gets overwhelmed. This allows bacteria to grow and spread, causing UTI symptoms like:

  • Burning while peeing
  • Painful urination (dysuria)
  • Lower abdominal pain or back pain
  • Bloating
  • Feeling like you have to go to the bathroom often and urgently
  • Blood urine or cloudy urine
  • Fever, aches or chills
  • Nausea or vomiting

Some of these common symptoms can easily be confused with other conditions. If you have any of the above—or other uncomfortable symptoms in the genital area—talk to a medical provider. They can help you figure out what’s going on.

Otherwise, here are a few ways to tell if your symptoms are caused by a UTI vs. something else. Plus, how to get antibiotics for UTI online with some help from Dr. B.

UTI vs. bladder infection?

The urinary tract includes the urethra, bladder, ureters and kidneys. Bladder infections (cystitis) are the most common type of UTI. Common signs that the bladder is infected include:

  • Pain or burning while peeing
  • Frequent, urgent need to go to the bathroom
  • Pelvic or low back pain

UTI vs. yeast infection

A yeast infection in the vagina or penis can sometimes be confused with a UTI. But yeast infections typically cause different symptoms that include:

  • White or yellow cheese-like discharge from the vagina
  • Burning, itching or redness on the exterior of the vagina or along the vaginal walls
  • Red, raw, itchy or painful rash on the penis

Antibiotics can impact bacteria in the vagina and make a yeast infection more likely. Talk to your medical provider if you develop vaginal symptoms after starting any antibiotics. And if you need to treat a UTI and yeast infection at the same time, Dr. B can help!

UTI vs. BV

Bacterial vaginosis (BV) is caused by an imbalance of “good” and “bad” bacteria in the vagina. It shares symptoms with yeast infections (like vaginal discomfort) and the painful burning of a UTI. So BV can feel like a UTI. But the more prominent BV symptoms include:

  • A watery or thin vaginal discharge that can look gray or greenish
  • A strong, fishy vaginal odor, which may be worse after sex

If you have a UTI and BV at the same time, Dr. B can help you figure out how to treat BV and UTI together with prescription antibiotics. Learn more here.

UTI vs. chlamydia

Chlamydia is a sexually transmitted infection (STI) that can affect people with penises and vaginas. Symptoms of a chlamydia infection include:

  • Pain with urination
  • A yellowish, strong-smelling vaginal discharge
  • A thin, milky discharge from the penis
  • Frequent urination

Chlamydia doesn’t always cause symptoms or may present only mild symptoms. But even in mild cases, chlamydia can cause serious long-term problems—especially for those assigned female at birth (AFAB). Complications include infertility, increased risk of miscarriage and a more widespread infection.

That’s why it’s important to get tested for STIs regularly and to use a barrier method of birth control, like condoms. And if one sexual partner has chlamydia, both partners should be treated to prevent retransmission.


UTIs and STDs/STIs can both cause symptoms like burning with urination and pelvic pain. But UTIs typically don’t cause any discharge from the penis or vagina. They also don’t cause itching, bumps, sores or blisters around the genitals, as many STIs do.

But STIs don’t always cause symptoms. And technically, an STI can cause a UTI if it moves into the urinary system. If you’re unsure about the cause of your symptoms, talk to a medical provider.

UTI vs kidney infection

A kidney infection is a type of UTI that requires prompt treatment. Without treatment, the infection can spread further or cause permanent kidney damage or kidney disease. Symptoms of a kidney infection include:

  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Fever or chills
  • Body aches or back pain
  • Blood in the urine

UTI vs. kidney stones

A kidney stone is a small pebble that forms in the kidneys. As the stone travels down the urinary system, it can get stuck in a ureter or the urethra, causing intense pain and other symptoms. A kidney stone can also block urine. So while a kidney stone is not a UTI, it can cause UTIs by blocking or slowing urine flow.

Symptoms of a kidney stone depend on where the stone(s) are and how big they are. But common kidney stone symptoms include:

  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Reddish-brown or bloody urine
  • Feeling like you need to pee a lot
  • Pain or burning when you pee
  • Pain in the back or pelvic area

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Find out if you have a UTI and get UTI meds online

If you have questions about whether your symptoms are caused by a UTI or something else, Dr. B can help! Most conditions that cause painful, burning urination or other pelvic symptoms can be treated with prescription medications. And Dr. B can help you get UTI antibiotics online—no phone or video call required.

First, fill out our online health assessment. A licensed medical provider will review your health history and symptoms. If they determine that an online UTI prescription is appropriate, they’ll send it to your chosen local pharmacy.

Dr. B offers several UTI medicines. So you can get UTI pills and excellent advice with one $15 health assessment. Start today.


Aaron, D. M. (2021). Candidiasis (yeast infection). Merck Manual Commercial Version.

Imam, T. H. (2022). Bladder infection. Merck Manual Commercial Version.

Imam, T. H. (2022). Kidney infection. Merck Manual Commercial Version.

Imam, T. H. (2022). Overview of urinary tract infections. Merck Manual Commercial Version.

Imam, T. H. (2022). Urethritis. Merck Manual Commercial Version.

Medina, M., et al. (2019). An introduction to the epidemiology and burden of urinary tract infections. Therapeutic Advances in Urology.

Merck Manual Editorial Staff. (2021). Quick facts: Stones in the urinary tract (kidney stones). Merck Manual Commercial Version.

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