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Nationally recognized researchers at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC have changed common practices for urinary tract infections (UTI), and have improved the lives of children in the process. Our studies have shown that UTI are the most frequently occurring serious infections in children. By developing highly accurate diagnostic criteria, we are now able to treat children as outpatients with oral antibiotics, rather than admitting them to the hospital for intravenous therapy. And our clinical research team is currently studying shorter treatment courses, the use of prophylactic antibiotics, biomarkers for diagnosing kidney infections, and the efficacy of steroids in preventing renal scars.
Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh’s UTI Center coordinates research, information, and support for community practitioners and parents, with the goal of promoting early diagnosis and evidence-based care for children with UTI. The center’s multidisciplinary approach combines the capabilities and expertise of the divisions of general academic Pediatrics, Urology, and Nephrology, as well as the Department of Pediatric Radiology.
In Pediatric Nephrology, researchers are investigating genetic reasons for vesicoureteral reflux (VUR) and urinary tract obstructions in children. Urology provides management of problems, including surgical corrections when needed, and voiding dysfunction through its Healthy Elimination Learning Program (HELP). HELP provides evaluation and treatment to children with a history of UTI, day and nighttime urinary incontinence, and voiding symptoms such as urgency, frequency, and incomplete bladder emptying.
Through a multidisciplinary approach, Children’s Hospital can help to prevent long-term UTI complications, including:
Experts at Children’s Hospital turned their focus to pediatric UTI more than 20 years ago. During this time, research has investigated:
Research at Children’s Hospital has led to more effective diagnosis and treatments for children with UTI, giving them the best possible chances of achieving a successful outcome. Researchers shared findings and expertise used to help develop the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) guidelines for UTI diagnosis and treatment, the latest of which were published in the September 2011 issue of Pediatrics.
Clinicians and researchers continue to look at ways in which diagnosis and treatment can be improved, and how their work can support the pediatric community. Current research includes:
New studies include: