The feeling of burning while you pee is not normal and signifies an issue that needs to be addressed. This problem usually arises because of UTI (urinary tract infection) and yeast infections. But while they may feel similar, these conditions have distinct causes and require different treatments. Let’s examine them in detail.

UTIs vs. Yeast Infections

Both UTIs (urinary tract infections) and yeast infections are menaces down there, causing burning, itching, and misery. However, even with so many similarities, these conditions are caused by entirely different culprits and thus need different treatments.


UTIs are caused by the bacteria E. coli, commonly found in the intestines. When it travels from the rectum to the urethra, it can ascend the urinary tract, causing an infection.

On the other hand, yeast infections arise from an overgrowth of a fungus called Candida albicans. It is naturally present in small amounts already inside the vagina, but certain factors can disrupt this balance, allowing overpopulation and causing infection.


Primarily, UTIs affect the lower urinary tract including the bladder and urethra. This is the main reason why the most significant symptom is burning during urination. This is when the bacteria irritate the lining of the urinary tract.

However, yeast infections reside in the vagina and vulva (the external parts of the genitalia). This explains the intense itching and irritation that are the identification markers of a yeast infection.

Treatment Option

Knowing the cause is essential for effective treatment. UTIs need antibiotics to target and eliminate infection causing bacteria. Yeast infections, however, need antifungal medications to combat the overgrowth of fungus. These medications come in various forms, like creams, suppositories, or oral tablets, depending on the severity of the infection.


Symptoms of UTIs and Yeast Infections

While both UTIs and yeast infections cause discomfort, some specific symptoms serve as clues to the causative agent.

UTIs typically increase the frequency of the urge to urinate, even if you only pass a small amount. Moreover, the urine itself may physically appear cloudy and bloody or may have a strong odor as well. Other than that, pain or burning during urination is another telltale sign.

Yeast infections bring along intense vaginal itching and irritation. The vagina may also turn red, swollen, and have a thick, white discharge (although a discharge is not always present).

UTI Symptoms

  1. Burning sensation
  2. Frequent urination
  3. Cloudy urine
  4. Strong odor
  5. Pelvic pain
  6. Back or side pain

Yeast Infection Symptoms

  1. Itching and irritation
  2. Burning sensation
  3. Redness and swelling
  4. Vaginal discharge

Can You Have Both?

Yes, it is quite possible to have a UTI and a yeast infection simultaneously. There are certain conditions, like pregnancy, diabetes, or immunosuppression that can increase the risk of developing both infections together.

Closing Note

By understanding the main differences between UTIs and yeast infections, you can get the right treatment soon. If you experience any of these symptoms, it is always best to consult a healthcare professional for a proper diagnosis. For more questions, ask our professionals for help. Contact our expert, Dr. Rajesh Maheshwari, MD, at San Ramon Urgent Care and Clinic for all your queries and concerns at (925) 361-5959.

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