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Discharge Instructions for Pyelonephritis

You have been told you have a kidney infection. This is called pyelonephritis. The infection can be serious. It can damage your kidneys and cause bacteria to enter your bloodstream. You were treated in the hospital. Once you return home, here’s what you can do at home to aid in your recovery and prevent future infections.

Home care

  • Take all the medicine you were prescribed, even if you feel better. Not finishing the medicine can make the infection come back. It may also make a future infection harder to treat.

  • Unless told not to by your healthcare provider, drink 8 to 12 glasses of fluid every day. Clear fluids, such as water, are best. This may help flush the infection from your system.

Preventing future infection

  • Keep your genital area clean. Use mild soap. Rinse with water.

  • If you are a woman, always wipe the genital area from front to back.

  • Urinate frequently. Don't hold urine in your bladder for a long time.

  • Always urinate after having sex.

  • Practice safe sex. Protect yourself and your partner from sexually transmitted infections (STIs).

Follow-up care

Follow up with your healthcare provider, or as advised. And see your healthcare provider for regular lab tests as directed.

When to call your healthcare provider

Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following:

  • Decreased urine output or trouble urinating

  • Severe pain in the lower back or flank

  • Fever of 100.4°F (38°C) or higher, or as directed by your healthcare provider

  • Shaking chills

  • Vomiting

  • Blood in your urine

  • Dark-colored or foul-smelling urine

  • Nausea or other problems that prevent you from taking your prescribed medicine

  • New or worsening symptoms

Online Medical Reviewer: Marianne Fraser MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Raymond Kent Turley BSN MSN RN
Online Medical Reviewer: Walead Latif MD
Date Last Reviewed: 4/1/2020
© 2000-2020 The StayWell Company, LLC. All rights reserved. This information is not intended as a substitute for professional medical care. Always follow your healthcare professional's instructions.
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