Kidney Infection

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Latest Edit: Hector 2013-05-29 (EDT)

A kidney infection, also known as pyelonephritis can be a serious complication of urinary tract infections. Common symptoms a kidney infection include those of a urinary tract infection plus fever and lower back pain.[1]

Kidney Infection
Kidney infection.jpg

Kidney Infection
Causes Infections, Medical Procedures
See Also Urinary Conditions, Urinary tract infection, Diabetes
Books Books on Respiratory Conditions
Articles Articles on Respiratory Conditions

Naturopathic Assessment

Causal Factors

Most kidney infections result from the progression of a urinary tract infection that was either not treated or where the treatment was too late or not effective. [2] Additional factors that are specific to kidney infections include:

  • E. coli is implicated in over 80% of kidney infections.[2]
  • Pathogens other than E. coli commonly implicated in kidney infection include Staphylococcus saprophyticus, Enterobacter species, Staphylococcus saprophyticus, Kleibsiella pneumoniae, and Proteus mirabilis.[2]
  • Medical Procedures
  • Catheterization is a risk factor for UTIs and kidney infections. [2]
  • Individuals with immunosuppression are at higher risk of kidney infection. Up to 50% of individuals undergoing renal transplant will develop a kidney infection due to immunosuppressive pharmacotherapy.[2]

Diagnostic Testing

  • Diagnostic Imaging including an ultrasound and CT scan can be employed in the management and diagnosis of kidney infection, and are most often used in severe cases or when obstruction needs to be excluded. [3]

Related Symptoms and Conditions

Conditions related to the development of kidney infection include:[1]


Kidney infection.jpg

Common Symptoms

Common symptoms of a kidney infection include:[4]

Naturopathic Treatment

The goal of naturopathic treatment is to support and work in tandem with the healing power of the body and to address the causal factors of disease with individual treatment strategies. A kidney infection can be a serious health issue requiring hospitalization and intensive treatment if not dealt with timely.

When caught early or when symptoms are mild, a kidney infection is treated similar to a urinary tract infection with respect to the therapies and remedies used. The difference is in the dosage or frequency that substances are taken.

It is always advisable to work with a naturopathic doctor before engaging in any treatment plan.


Reviewed by Iva Lloyd, BScH, RPE, ND [1]

  1. 1.0 1.1 Kumar (2009) Robbins and Cotran Pathologic Basis of Disease, Professional Edition, 8th ed Saunders
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 Ramakrishnan K, Scheid DC (2005) Diagnosis and Management of Acute Pyelonephritis in Adults. Am Fam Phys;71(5).
  3. Nicolle LE (2008) Uncomplicated Urinary Tract Infection in Adults Including Uncomplicated Pyelonephritis. Urologic Clinics of North America; 35(1)
  4. Wein (2011) Campbell-Walsh Urology 10th ed Saunders