Risk Factors for UTI

Risk factors for urinary tract infections include the following:

  • Bladder outlet obstructions (e.g., bladder stones, benign prostatic hyperplasia [BPH, enlarged prostate])
  • Conditions that cause incomplete bladder emptying (e.g., spinal cord injury)
  • Congenital (present at birth) abnormalities of the urinary tract (e.g., vesicoureteral reflux [VUR])
  • Suppressed immune system
  • Being uncircumcised (in males)

Certain blood types enable bacteria to attach more easily to cells that line the urinary tract, increasing the risk for recurrent urinary tract infections.

Publication Review By: Daniel Khouri, M.D., Stanley J. Swierzewski, III, M.D.

Published: 10 Jun 1998

Last Modified: 16 Mar 2015