Top 8 UTI Symptoms in Men (plus How It’s Diagnosed and Treated)

Updated in November 2023

The main symptoms of urinary tract infections in men are a frequent urge to urinate, cloudy and strong-smelling urine, blood in the urine, pain and burning when urinating and a low-grade fever.

Despite being more common in women, urinary tract infections can also affect men. They are especially common after the age of 50,+ due to specific health conditions, like benign prostatic hyperplasia, which make it difficult for urine to pass out and facilitate the development of bacteria and other microorganisms. 

If you notice signs and symptoms of a UTI, it is important to consult a urologist so that the infection can be confirmed and the best treatment can be initiated, which is normally done with the use of antibiotics. Read about the UTI medicine that your doctor may prescribe.

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Symptoms of UTI in men

The main symptoms of urinary tract infections in men are:

  1. Frequent urge to urinate
  2. Pain and burning when urinating
  3. Difficulty holding urine
  4. Cloudy and strong-smelling urine
  5. Waking up at night to go to the bathroom
  6. Low-grade fever
  7. Presence of blood in the urine
  8. Pain in the groin area or lower back

It is also possible that these symptoms may arise due to an STI or change in the prostate and, therefore, the urologist may order several tests to identify the correct cause and initiate the most appropriate treatment.

Male UTI causes

Some factors can increase your risk for a urinary tract infection, such as:

  • Unprotected anal sex;
  • Using a catheter to urinate;
  • Having an enlarged prostate, also known as benign prostatic hyperplasia, as well as a family history of the illness;
  • Not drinking enough fluids;
  • Holding urine for a long time on a frequent basis;
  • Urine reflux from the bladder to the kidneys;
  • Kidney stones;
  • Diabetes;
  • Multiple sclerosis or another neurologic disease;
  • Chronic kidney disease;
  • Urinary tract cancer;
  • Taking certain medications;
  • Chronic prostatitis.

Additionally, men who are not circumcised have higher chances of suffering from UTIs or STDs, as the excess skin on the penis makes cleaning more difficult and increases the risk of microorganisms proliferating in that region.

Confirming a diagnosis

The diagnosis of a UTI in men is based on the symptoms and in the result of a urine test. This test analyzes a urine sample in order to identify the presence of microorganisms that may be causing the infection. The microorganisms that are found more frequently in those with a urinary tract infection are Escherichia coli, Klebsiella, and Proteus.

Additionally, the doctor may ask some questions about the man’s sexual life, in order to identify risk factors for infections or STIs, as well as doing a rectal examination to check if the prostate has increased in size.  

In young men that have symptoms of an enlarged prostate, the urologist may also recommend tests such as computerized tomography, ultrasonography, and/or cystoscopy to assess if there are other problems in the urinary tract. 

Treatment options 

The treatment for urinary tract infections in men is done according to the cause of the problem, with antibiotics usually being necessary. Learn about the medications and home remedies that can be used to treat UTIs. 

In general, symptoms start to improve after 2 days of medicinal treatment, but in more serious cases a prolonged treatment (two or more weeks) or hospital admittance may be necessary.

Check out UTI teas you can make at home to complement your prescribed treatment.