Honeymoon Cystitis: Everything You Want to Know

    Honeymoon Cystitis: Everything You Want to Know
    Published 03 February 2020
    Fact Checked
    Marina Savchenko, MD
    Reviewed by Marina Savchenko, MD, Pediatric Neurologist, Medical Consultant at Flo
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    Cystitis is the medical name for inflammation of the bladder. Typically, this inflammation occurs as a result of bacterial infection and is classified as a urinary tract infection. Keep reading to learn about honeymoon cystitis, including its common treatment, symptoms, causes, and more.

    What is honeymoon cystitis?

    Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are among the most common bacterial infections in women, accounting for about 25 percent of all infections. Approximately 50 to 60 percent of women will have at least one urinary tract infection during their lifetime. In most patients, UTIs are caused by a bacteria called Escherichia coli (E. coli). The main cause of recurrent urinary tract infections (RUTIs) is reinfection by the same bacteria.

    Women are more prone to urinary tract infections than men because the female urethra is shorter than the male urethra. A shorter urethra makes it easier for bacteria to reach the bladder. One of the major risk factors for RUTIs is frequent sexual intercourse. Acute cystitis that occurs after frequent vaginal intercourse is sometimes called honeymoon cystitis.

    Complicated RUTIs can lead to upper urinary tract infections or urosepsis. Bacteria from the urinary bladder may move to the kidneys and ureters, causing kidney infection (pyelonephritis). An infection of the upper urinary tract may result in a more serious illness in comparison to an infection of the lower urinary tract.

    Signs and symptoms of honeymoon cystitis

    Some of the symptoms and signs of honeymoon cystitis are as follows:

    What causes honeymoon cystitis

    In uncomplicated honeymoon cystitis, there is inflammation of the mucous membranes that line the urinary bladder. The usual cause of this inflammation is bacteria that travels from the outside of the body through the urethra and into the bladder.  

    In uncomplicated honeymoon cystitis, there is inflammation of the mucous membranes that line the urinary bladder.

    The organisms most likely to cause honeymoon cystitis are Escherichia coli (79 percent of cases), Staphylococcus saprophyticus (four percent), Proteus mirabilis (four percent), and Klebsiella pneumoniae (four percent). The remaining nine percent of honeymoon cystitis cases are caused by other bacteria.

    Honeymoon cystitis treatment

    If the cause of honeymoon cystitis is a bacterial infection, antibiotics are the usual treatment. Management of noninfectious cystitis depends on the primary cause of cystitis.

    Treating bacterial honeymoon cystitis

    Antibiotics are the first-line treatment for honeymoon cystitis. The medication prescribed and the length of treatment depend on your general health and the type of bacteria causing the infection.

    First-time honeymoon cystitis often shows a significant improvement of symptoms within one or two days of starting antibiotic therapy. It may be necessary to take antibiotics for anywhere from three days to one week depending on the severity of the infection.

    Management of noninfectious cystitis depends on the primary cause of cystitis.

    Complete the course of antibiotic treatment as prescribed to make sure that the bacterial infection is cured completely.

    For recurrent urinary tract infections, the physician may prescribe longer duration antibiotic treatment. They may also refer you to a nephrologist or urologist. A urologist may check to see if abnormalities of the urinary tract are the cause of repeated infections. Some people may find taking one dose of an antibiotic drug after having sexual intercourse helpful, but this should only be done if recommended by a doctor.

    Preventing recurrent honeymoon cystitis

    Here are some measures that may help to prevent the recurrence of infection. However, the effectiveness of these measures isn’t entirely clear: If you get frequent UTIs, these are some things to try:

    • Avoid using scented soap or talcum powder around the genital area.
    • Showering rather than bathing reduces the amount of time the genitals are exposed to the chemicals in soap.
    • Go to the bathroom the moment you feel the urge to pee. Always empty your urinary bladder fully.
    • Stay hydrated by drinking lots of fluids. This may help stop the bacteria from multiplying in the urinary bladder.
    • Always wipe front to back to prevent the spread of bacteria from the anus to the urethra and vagina.
    • Pee as soon as you can after having sexual intercourse.
    • Don’t use a diaphragm as a method of contraception. Consider other methods of birth control instead.
    • Wear underwear made of cotton fabric and avoid wearing tight pants and jeans.
    • Drinking cranberry juice is one of the most popular honeymoon cystitis home remedies. However, according to large studies, it hasn’t been found to make a notable difference.

    A final note about honeymoon cystitis

    Cystitis is characterized by inflammation of the urinary bladder that usually occurs due to a bacterial infection. In women, cystitis is one of the most common types of UTIs and usually doesn’t cause serious problems. Acute cystitis that happens after repeated vaginal intercourse is referred to as honeymoon cystitis. Mild cases of honeymoon cystitis often improve by themselves within several days. But for some, cystitis may occur repeatedly and require long-term treatment. In some instances, cystitis can result in a more serious infection of the kidney, which is why it’s vital to get medical advice if your symptoms aren’t improving.

    History of updates
    Current version (03 February 2020)
    Reviewed by Marina Savchenko, MD, Pediatric Neurologist, Medical Consultant at Flo
    Published (03 February 2020)
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