Historically, women have to work harder to get physicians to understand and properly diagnose their pain. The health care struggle is even more difficult for women of color. So when a woman posted a jokey but honest tweet about the frustrating non-treatment women receive from doctors when they complain of regular UTIs. it hit home.
Conditions like PCOS, fibromyalgia, and IBS (to name a few) have been overlooked or misdiagnosed in women for as long as women have had bodies. Same goes for chronic UTIs. That UTI tweet went viral, with women sharing their own anecdotes of doctors telling them to pee after sex when they weren’t even sexually active or pushing antibiotics even though they’ve gotten three UTIs a year for the past 18 years.
It is important to note that there is a difference between a recurrent UTI and chronic urinary tract infection. According to Live UTI Free, whatever solution you receive for a UTI at an urgent care or women’s clinic is only meant to address one-off UTIs. For chronic UTIs, one should seek out a specialist (like a urologist).
Le sigh, ladies, we are right there with you. It is important to note that UTIs don’t exclusively affect women, although the National Institutes of Health reports that 50% of women will experience a UTI at least once in their lives.