Health Information For Parents

A to Z: Pyelonephritis

Content

Pyelonephritis (pie-low-ne-FRY-tis) is an infection in one or both kidneys. Pyelonephritis happens when urine (pee) infected with bacteria flows up from the bladder or when an infection in the bloodstream reaches the kidneys.

More to Know

A kidney infection like pyelonephritis is similar to a bladder infection, as they are both urinary tract infections (UTIs). However, children are usually sicker with fever, back pain, or vomiting with pyelonephritis.

Keep in Mind

Pyelonephritis requires medical attention. A doctor will ask for a urine sample, and may order other tests, to determine the cause and best treatment. It’s important to treat kidney infections with a full course of antibiotics. Untreated and repeat infections can lead to high blood pressure and kidney disease in adulthood.

All A to Z dictionary entries are regularly reviewed by KidsHealth medical experts.

Translation

Resources

  • National Kidney Foundation (NKF)

    NKF seeks to prevent kidney and urinary tract diseases, improve the health and well-being of individuals and families affected by these diseases, and increase the availability of all organs for transplantation.

  • American Academy of Family Physicians

    This site, operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP), provides information on family physicians and health care, a directory of family physicians, and resources on health conditions.

  • American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP)

    The AAP is committed to the health and well-being of infants, adolescents, and young adults. The website offers news articles and tips on health for families.

  • Nephron Information Center

    The Nephron Information Center offers information about how the kidneys work, transplants, and links to other sites.

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