App To help Prevent Urinary Tract Infections
A new app is available which was designed to help prevent urinary tract infections. The app was created by Dr Dana Rice, a board-certified female urologist in Fairfax, Virginia.
According to the UTI Tracker’s website, “The UTI Tracker mobile app helps patients take control of their healthcare by cataloging daily urinary tract symptoms, medication, and behavioral patterns, and offers personalized tips for UTI prevention.”
Some people have a tendency to develop recurrent urinary tract infections. Behavioral modification has been shown to help reduce the incidence of urinary tract infections.
According to the UTI mobile app website, “The app assists with cataloging symptoms, behaviors, treatments and cultures in a fun and easy way. When patients are able to identify patterns or triggers for pain episodes, physicians can better treat and prevent future infections.”
The UTI Tracker app comes with different features voiding diaries, daily journal, and weekly tips. The app also features automatic notifications of behavior patterns that increase your risk of UTI’s.
Questions for Dr. Rice
1. What inspired you to create the UTI tracker app?
“I wrote a chapter on UTIs in residency and saw tons of patients both in residency and now in practice who suffer from UTI or UTI-like symptoms. Often these patients are treated with antibiotics repeatedly often over the phone without culture. I realized there had to be a better more informed way to take care of these patients.”
2. Why did you include certain features/questions?
I chose questions and information based on my usual office speech. I find so many women (in particular, but sometimes men) have no idea what causes UTIs or why over treatment with antibiotics can be bad. I wanted to give them a way to track their symptoms and triggers to help prevent future UTIs
3. Why should this app help prevent UTIs?
I find that once patients understand their triggers (sex, alcohol, exercise, etc) for UTI like symptoms then they are able to keep infections to a minimum. Also, the extras like voiding diary and time voiding alerts are helpful tools for good urinary health strategies. I think lots of physicians recommend behavioral changes, but it is hard for the average patient to implement these changes. The idea is this app would make it easier.
4. Advice for building an app?
Too new, give me a month or so to digest. I have been working full time and working on this. I haven’t fully processed all that has been done yet. I have had to learn so much.
I think the biggest thing is that this app has many uses for GU dysfunction (ie. stress incontinence, urinary urgency, urinary frequency, etc). We wanted to start a suite of apps, but since it is just my husband, myself and a small design team we had to start one and see how it goes. We thought this might reach the most people. Hoping it gets to urgent cares and college campuses.
Urinary tract infection information
According to the Center for Disease Control, “Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are among the most common infections.”
Women and girls are at a higher risk. Their urethra is shorter, making it easier for bacteria to enter the urinary tract.
Most UTIs are caused by bacteria for which antibiotics are prescribed.
Unfortunately, bacteria are becoming increasingly resistant to antibiotics.
The risk of bacterial resistance increases with recurrent antibiotic use.
UTIs often recur in the same people. Multiple courses of antibiotics will increase bacterial resistance in the group.
Who is at risk for a urinary tract infection?
- Those with a previous UTI
- Sexual activity can increase the risk of a UTI
- Older age
- Bed rest or lower activity level
- Urinary incontinence
- Blockage of the urinary tract with kidney stones or enlarged prostate increases the risk of a urinary tract infection.
- Spermicides and diaphragms can also increase your risk of urinary tract infection according to The Mayo Clinic
Symptoms of a urinary tract infection
- Pain or burning while urinating
- Frequent urination
- Persistent urge to urinate
- Cloudy or bloody urine
- Change in the urine smell
- Pelvic pain
Read more about the UTI Tracker app Information
What do you do for recurrent urinary tract infections?