Cystitis is a bothersome condition arising from infection in the urine. It usually resolves quickly with antibiotics.

Some women are prone to repeated episodes of cystitis. Men rarely suffer from cystitis;  Our doctors can prescribe prescription strength cystitis treatment such as a course of Trimethoprim or Nitrofurantoin antibiotics for immediate use or keep as standby for recurring cases.

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Summary of available medications

Medication Quantity Price
Trimethoprim 200mg 6 or 12 tablets (1 or 2 courses of treatment) From £13.95
Nitrofurantoin 100mg 6 or 12 capsules (1 or 2 course of treatment) From £12.95
MacroBid 100mg SR Caps 14 Capsules (one full course of treatment – 7 days) £39.99

All medications


Medication Quantity Price
Trimethoprim 200mg 6 tablets (1 course of treatment) £13.95
Trimethoprim 200mg 12 tablets (2 courses of treatment) £24.99


Medication Quantity Price
Nitrofurantoin 100mg 6 capsules (1 course of treatment) £12.95
Nitrofurantoin 100mg 12 capsules (2 courses of treatment) £24.99
MacroBid 100mg SR Caps 14 Capsules (one full course of treatment – 7 days) £39.99

All prices exclude prescription fee

What is cystitis?

It is the name used for an inflamed bladder due to a urine infection or irritation after sexual intercourse. In women, it is very common and can be easily treated. In men and children, it can be an indication for other health problems so a face to face consultation is required with your regular doctor to discuss treatment.

How is cystitis treated?

Cystitis infection is contained using antibiotics and prevented from spreading; once contained the immune system can clear the infection. Trimethoprim and Nitrofurantoin (brand name Macrobid) are the most popular and effective antibiotics normally prescribed to treat cystitis. Amoxicillin is another type of antibiotic used for treatment, but not suitable for people allergic to penicillin. You must complete the full course of treatment prescribed to you for it to be effective.

How do I know if I need treatment?

Cystitis also known as a water infection is a recurring problem for many women. Most people are aware of it and seek medical treatment if it doesn’t clear up after a few days. Most women know the medicine which they find most effective, trimethoprim or nitrofurantoin capsules. You can order a full course of trimethoprim or macrobid (nitrofurantoin) online from DrFelix without having to see your regular doctor and have it delivered to you. If you experience blood in the urine, pain in lower abdomen, vomiting or fever, you should seek treatment as soon as possible.

Does cystitis have any symptoms?

An inflamed bladder or water infection includes having to urinate often and experience a burning sensation/pain whilst doing it. The urine will seem cloudier than normal and carry a bad smell. Some other symptoms can include stomach pain, possible blood in the urine and a rise in your temperature. Cystitis can sometimes clear up without any medication, but you will need antibiotics to cure the infection completely. If left untreated it can spread to the kidneys.

Is cystitis a common infection?

Yes, especially in women who are almost 10 times more likely to get cystitis than men. At least half of the women will get the infection once in their life. Women are more likely candidates for cystitis because their urethra is smaller and closer proximity to the anus compared to men.

How can I prevent cystitis?

Bladder infections are mostly contracted through the germs from bowel movements transferring from the anus to the urethra. Some types of bacteria rapidly grow in urine and make the infection much worse. This normally occurs in people who don’t go to the toilet enough which leads to infection due to the bacteria in the bladder system. Cystitis can also come about in men due to prostate problems and kidney stones. If you don’t drink enough liquids, it can lead to your urine becoming more concentrated and cause bacterial infections.

Why check for E.coli in the urine?

E.coli is the often the cause of infection, therefore it is common for your doctor to do a urine test to check for E.coli. The test allows identifying the offensive bacteria which causes the infection. You will be prescribed a single course of antibiotics if suitable normally trimethoprim or nitrofurantoin also known as macrobid. If E.coli is resistant to this treatment your GP can review this and prescribe something else more suitable.

What are the risks for women that can lead to cystitis?

Hormonal changes due to menopause or pregnancy can contribute to the infection. Having unprotected sex, too much sex and sex with new partners can all push bacteria into the urethra and cause the infection. Too much sugar levels in the blood promote bacteria especially in diabetic people and a weak immune system due to various reasons. Some other risks are kidney stones, allergy to certain creams, chlamydia and thrush.

Can cystitis cause any complications?

Cystitis in men is usually an indication of a more serious problem and requires medical help from your GP. It can also be caused by STI’s which can have other complications. Although most occurrences of bladder infection can clear within a few days, but if it lasts for longer than this you should consider antibiotic treatment. Because if left untreated after it hasn’t cleared up, it can lead to a serious kidney infection.

What happens after the treatment?

Majority of women will notice in improvement within days after taking the treatment, if there is no improvement, speak to your GP as you may be prescribed a different antibiotic in case the bacteria resists the one you already took.

Cystitis is normally cured with a short course of antibiotics. Trimethoprim is the most common antibiotic for the cystitis treatment and usually cures over 90% of urine infections.

Nitrofurantoin is the alternative which is as effective but more suitable for pregnant women but this needs to be discussed with your GP depending on the stage of your pregnancy.

Amoxicillin is another alternative if you are allergic to trimethoprim and nitrofurantoin.

Side effects of Trimethoprim

Some of the common side effects of trimethoprim include feeling sick, itching and a skin rash. You can see a more detailed list of cautions and side effects here.

Side effects of Nitrofurantoin

The most common side effects reported for Nitrofurantoin include dizziness, diarrhoea and feeling sick or vomiting. Nitrofurantoin can also make the colour of your urine darker, this is normal and nothing to worry about.