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Does Flagyl Treat UTI?

Diseases of the urinary system may be caused by a wide variety of pathogens. It is always crucial to determine the culprit to select the proper treatment. Even though Flagyl does not belong to the first-line options, it is sometimes also utilized for this type of disease. Let’s break down more details to understand how it works and when Flagyl is appropriate to treat a UTI.

Understanding UTIs

The main organs in the urinary system are the urethra, bladder and kidneys. Usually, harmful microorganisms come through the urethra and move upwards causing inflammation and numerous unpleasant symptoms. This condition is more common in women because their urethras are shorter and more prone to infections.

If left untreated, the initial minor issue can be transformed into kidney inflammation and severe diseases. Therefore, it is important to search for medical help and get proper diagnostics and treatment at the very beginning of the process.


The majority of UTIs are caused by Escherichia coli. In addition, both men and women can suffer from Gardrenella vaginosis. These options are common but we should mention that almost every bacteria could cause inflammation and certain changes if it happens to reach inside the urinary system.

This list includes resistant strains and even combinations of microorganisms that require sophisticated treatment.

Symptoms of UTI

The common unpleasant symptoms of such illness include:

  • burning sensation while peeing;
  • frequent urination or complete inability to do this;
  • abrupt change in the smell and color of the pee.

Furthermore, patients can suffer from pain in the abdomen, back and fever. Sometimes there is even blood in the pee.

Early treatment

The proper treatment is required from the very first stages of the disease. It always includes antibiotics that must be prescribed by the doctor after analysis. Before the results are clear, some broad-spectrum options may be chosen.

In addition, the physician may add analgesic and anti-inflammatory agents depending on the condition of the patient. It is also recommended to drink a lot of pure water to flush out the harmful microorganisms.

What is Flagyl

Flagyl is also known as metronidazole and belongs to the class of synthetic antibiotics. It was created in the middle of the XX century and was the first one with such a chemical structure. Nowadays the group of nitroimidazoles is wider but this representative is still popular and backed by science for the cure of infectious and protozoa diseases.


This medicine is prescribed for different stomach, heart, joints, bone, vaginal, skin and blood infections. It is active against Trichomonas vaginalis, Giardia intestinalis, Gardnerella vaginalis, Entamoeba histolytica, anaerobic and gram-positive strains and Helicobacter pylori.

In the case of nongonococcal urethritis caused by some resistant strains, this medicine is also utilized.

How Flagyl works

The main idea of any antibiotic is to kill bacteria and prevent their growth and development. Flagyl does this via the interaction with their DNA and stopping its normal functioning.

Therefore, the proper concentration of this medicine makes it impossible for the harmful pathogens to continue their living inside the host.

Can Flagyl Treat UTI?

The answer to this question depends on the main cause of the UTI. Thus, the analysis of the pathogen is always crucial and it gives the understanding of the type of antibiotic that is required and will be effective.

Flagyl is quite rarely chosen as the first-line remedy because it is quite specific and works well mainly against protozoa and anaerobic pathogens. The latter rarely becomes the cause of UTIs.

This option is chosen for the cure of nongonococcal urethritis caused by resistant strains. It also works well in combination with other antibiotics like azithromycin, doxycycline or erythromycin.

How to Take Flagyl for UTI

The most common are oral dosage forms of the drug, namely the tablets or oral solutions. The dose can be from 250 to 500 mg and is determined individually for each patient.

The treatment lasts on average for 1 week, or it can be from 5 to 10 days long. It is highly important to follow the chosen scheme, not miss doses and take them according to the prescription. This influences the efficiency of the treatment and the recovery process.

UTI-Causing Pathogens

One of the main difficulties in UTI treatment is the diagnostic stage. Various microorganisms can attack the urinary tract and cause illnesses. Still, the most common among them is Escherichia coli. This bacterium lives in the intestines and can reach the urinary tract in the case of lack of hygiene.

If in the guts, it is a normal part of the microflora, in the urinary system it causes inflammation and starts to move upward attacking all the organs on its way.

Apart from E. coli, Gardrenella vaginosis is also quite common, and other strains of various nature can also become the cause of UTIs. Therefore, careful diagnostics is inevitable to find the real pathogen and select the means for treatment.

Alternative UTI Treatments

Together with the basic therapy that includes antibiotics and other remedies to treat the symptoms, you may find lots of information about alternative remedies. Here we’re going to have a brief look at a few of them but keep in mind that they do not replace antibiotics and may serve only as additional help.


Probiotics contain useful microorganisms that normalize gut functioning and are believed to have a positive impact on the immune system. They are sold in pharmacies and can be also found in fermented foods like kefir, kombucha and yogurts.

They are recommended not for UTI treatment but mainly for their prevention due to the positive health impact. Some studies reveal a decrease in risk level for such infections in people who regularly take probiotics. However, when the disease is in progress, they will not be able to stop or cure it.

Heat therapy

This option is good for relieving unpleasant symptoms like pain and discomfort in the pelvic area. For this, one can utilize a heating pad, a warm washcloth or a bottle of a hot water. It is put gently near the bladder or pelvic area.

The same effect can be achieved with the help of a warm bath. It effectively relieves pain and contributes to muscle relaxation.


This compound is a sugar that you can add to your diet as a supplement or just enrich the everyday diet with blueberries, cranberries, peaches, apples, oranges, green beans and broccoli.

There is some evidence that this compound helps in UTI prevention, as well as in the process of treatment of the active stage. However, the mechanism of action is still not clear. Thus, D-mannose is recommended only as an additional remedy to the basic therapy.


Various UTIs are common among both men and women. Moreover, they may be caused by a wide variety of pathogens. This makes the treatment a kind of sophisticated art that requires a lot of knowledge and skills from the physician.

At first, the main pathogen is determined. Then, the doctor selects an antibiotic. Flagyl belongs to the list of possible options for the treatment UTI. However, it is effective mainly for resistant strains and in combination with other medicines. In any case, one must trust the treatment to the specialist and strictly follow the prescribed scheme to avoid unpleasant consequences and get rid of harmful bacteria once and for all.


Can Flagyl be used to treat a UTI?

This medicine does not belong to the first-line remedies for this type of infectious disease. Still, it can be utilized in combination in the case of resistant strain, when other drugs are not effective.

What infections does Flagyl treat?

Flagyl is active against a wide range of protozoa and anaerobic pathogens. Therefore, doctors prescribe it for various stomach, heart, joints, bone, vaginal, skin and blood infections.

Which antibiotic is best for UTI infection?

There is no unified answer to this question as it depends on the main cause of the disease. Broad-spectrum antibiotics can be prescribed before the analysis is done. When the bacteria that causes the infection is determined, then an antibiotic is chosen according to its nature.

What are the side effects of Flagyl for UTI?

The most common negative reactions include headaches and dizziness, nausea and vomiting. Sometimes the medicine leaves a metallic aftertaste or changes the color of urine. If any of the side effects appear and persist, one has to immediately consult a doctor.