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