Inflammation of the bladder lining, usually due to a bacterial infection. The main symptoms are a frequent urge to pass urine and burning pain on urinating. Urine may be foul-smelling or contain blood. There may be fever and chills, and lower abdominal discomfort. Cystitis is common in women because the urethra is short, making it easier for bacteria to pass into the bladder. A bladder calculus (stone), a bladder tumour, or a urethral stricture can obstruct urine flow and increase the risk of infection. In men, cystitis is rare; it usually occurs when an obstruction, such as an enslarged prostate gland (see prostate, enlarged), compresses the urethra. Cystitis is children is often associated with a structural abnormality of the ureters, which allows reflux (backward flow) of urine. The use of catheters (see catheterization, urinary) also carries the risk of infection. Diabetics are especially susceptible to urinary tract infections. Symptoms of mild cystitis may be relieved by drinking 1 pint (⁄ liter) of fluid every 4 hours. Any infection is treated with antibiotic drugs.


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