Itching, burning, bloody urine and the need to frequently pee. Those are symptoms of a urinary tract infection (UTI).

Researchers at Baylor College of Medicine and Washington University School of Medicine say that UTIs are not only common, but they're also often recurrent and give rise to antibiotic-resistant bacteria.

So they looked for a new way to treat the infections. They learned that most UTI's are caused by one type of bacteria. They also found out how they body protects good cells while getting rid of the bad bacteria. That's the process they focused on. They say a certain type of medication already used to treat multiple sclerosis may speed the process of protecting the bladder while getting rid of the bacteria.

They say this is huge because many people, especially women, have recurrent UTIs, which can cause muscle damage over time. The new approach, while not ready for use in people yet, could lead the way to new treatments that can stop infections prevent damage without antibiotics.

The study was published in the journal Cell Reports.

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