Kirstin, who works in the music industry, was admitted to hospital 24 times with UTI
“I had gone to bed one night with a slight niggling feeling that I was getting a UTI. I told my husband that if it didn’t clear in a few days, I would go to my GP. A few days later, it had become much worse – feeling sick, a temperature, frequency, urgency to wee, as well as back pain.
My GP did a dipstick test and it confirmed an infection. I was given a course of antibiotics and away I went. I completed this course, but the symptoms had not quite subsided. The GP decided to try a different antibiotic. This seemed to have done the job and I was happy. But two weeks later, I had yet again more symptoms of a UTI and was prescribed the first antibiotic again.
This went on for another year, until I was finally referred to a urologist who performed a cystoscopy. All they found was inflammation. I bled terribly for months after that, and after the procedure my symptoms became much, much worse, to the point that I was bed bound for nearly six months solid. I was admitted to hospital 24 times with extreme bladder and kidney pain.
I was told that I had interstitial cystitis and that all they could do was manage my symptoms. This procedure made my condition far, far worse than I was able to cope with. In time, I lost my identity, my job and all of my confidence.
I spent a year going to my GP with them sending off urine samples, only to be told countless times that there was nothing wrong with me. Then, through social media, I met a lady who was receiving treatment for urinary tract infection from the LUTS Clinic in north London. I returned to my GP asking if he would refer me on the NHS.
At the clinic they explained that I had epithelial cells and pus cells in my urine. I began treatment and, after nearly 17 months on antibiotics, I am fully better.
I believe the reason I developed this infection is because I was given the wrong antibiotics at a low dose. I was countlessly told I was imagining this and that would I benefit from CBT counselling. This was a huge insult to me.”