I began having kidney infections at the age of 7. I had several severe kidney infections in my teen years and early 20's and had several test done with results of scarring only. I had the worst kidney infection in my late 20's with a fever of 104.5 and E.coli present, the "walk in clinic" doctor wanted to send me to the hospital but I refused due to having two small children and recently divorced, so I chose to just take medication at home. From this point on I began having Kidney infections almost monthly and took every kind of medication known to mankind! I have now built up a tolerance to all medications except Cipro. In my mid 30's the infections slowed down and I thought things were getting better.... Now I have noticed the pain in the kidney area (back) and sometimes I will have pus and blood in my urine for two days and then it goes away. I have noticed pitting edema in both lower legs (minor edema but it is +4 ) and within the last few days my fingers (only two) are swelling and VERY painful. My urination has decreased to the point of going to the bathroom about 5-8 times daily.
I have seen several Urologist over the course of my life and had several test completed, I have been told by some that the infections were due to too much sexual intercourse, one said that I had a kidney dz and other have just said that I am just prone to the infections and need to deal with it...
The last test was two renal ultrasounds and both came back normal. Last blood work has been about two years ago and was also normal. The only test that showed the scarring was the IVP and that was completed in my early to mid 20's. I have had two voiding cystograms for reflux and both were normal.
My question is...what is causing the edema and could the pain and swelling in my fingers be contributed to my kidneys as well? I am at my wits end about the whole Kidney infection frequency but my husband is worried that there is something truly wrong. I am not a unhealthy person (maybe 10-15 lbs over weight), I work on a ambulance and in a hospital (we really do make the worst patients), I am no longer able to drink alcohol (never really liked it anyway) due to intense edema after one wine cooler but I do smoke about 1/2-1 pack a day and have for over 20 yrs. I did have two c-sections due to the inability to go INTO labor at age 21 and 24. I was dx with a irregular heart rhythm at the age of 16 ( and flutters), no HTN, cholesterol is perfect, no diabetes, dx with uterine fibroids, endometriosis, adenomyosis and had a ablation done about 6 months ago. There is no family hx of kidney problems but my oldest daughter started passing kidney stones at the age of 12 and has had about three kidney infections in 6 years.
Any information would be greatly appreciated.