Its usually not necessary for a womans partner to be evaluated when she has a typical urinary tract infection (UTI), such as a bladder infection.
Women are much more prone than men to develop UTIs. Thats because most UTIs start when bacteria enter the urinary tract from the skin on the outside of the body. A womans urethra (urine tube) is much shorter than a mans urethra. This means that bacteria need to travel a shorter distance to get inside the bladder.
Furthermore, most UTIs arent passed from one sexual partner to another. Instead, the bacteria that cause UTIs normally live inside a persons bowel. Testing a partner for bacteria wont cut a womans chances of developing a second UTI. Nor will treating that person with an antibiotic.
A couple things to consider:
- Some women appear prone to develop urinary infections after sexual intercourse. This is particularly true with vigorous or frequent sex. Or sex with a new partner. This is likely caused by irritation at the opening of the urethra, which sits at the front upper end of the vulva (outer portion or lips of a womans reproductive organs). In these situations, it can be helpful to change sexual positions, ensure adequate hygiene, and take an antibiotic immediately before or after sex.
- Infection of the urethra itself, called urethritis, can be a sexually transmitted condition. Most often this is caused by a sexually transmitted bacterium called chlamydia. Your doctor may diagnose urethritis if you have a sore or tender urethra. Or if there is a discharge from the opening of the urethra. Men can get this condition too. A special urine test can confirm a specific cause for urethritis. If you test positive for sexually transmitted bacteria, you and your partner(s) will need to be treated.