What is Pyelonephritis? 

Pyelonephritis refers to inflammation of the kidneys and usually occurs from bacterial infection. 


  • Fever
  • Flank Tenderness
  • Nausea
  • A burning sensation during urination
  • Urinary frequency
  • Haematuria (blood in the urine)


  • Sepsis
  • Kidney Failure
  • Pus around the kidneys

Risk Factors

  • Sexual Intercourse
  • Previous Urinary Tract Infections
  • Diabetes
  • Structural Problems within the Urinary Tract


Diagnosis is typically based on symptoms and is supported by urinalysis (the doctor will ask you to provide a urine specimen which is sent to pathology for testing and culture). If there is no improvement with treatment, you may be sent for medical imaging. 


Once Pyelonephritis is present, it is usually treated with antibiotics that are sensitive to the identified bacterial culture. Those severely affected, may require treatment in hospital. If structural issues within the urinary tract have been identified, such as a kidney stone, surgery may be required.