High CRP

Hi. A question. I have been feeling unwell since last Wednesday. Lower back pain, general achy feeling all over. Went to doctor on Thursday who suspected urine infection and gave me Trimethoprim. She also ordered blood and urine tests. Over the weekend I felt worse and had a couple of hypo attacks ( cured with sugar water). I have just phoned Dr for blood results and was told I have a UTI. I asked about my CRP and it is 111. Because it is so high I think there is more going on than UTI. Would a UTI make you feel "fluey". Extreme sweating and lower blood sugar? Also I don't have any pain or discomfort passing urine. Am I being a bit of a hypochondriac in suspecting a GCA flare or maybe the start of PMR. Like many I have forgotten what normal feels like. Would be grateful of any advice. I am diagnosed with GCA of the Aorta and my last CRP three weeks ago was 13. Thanks

17 Replies

  • Hi Caro12line,

    A nasty UTI or pyelonephritis would account for all your symptoms. CRP's of up to 300 and beyond are not uncommon with sepsis.

    Did your GP send a urine sample to the lab to be cultured? It's really important to identify the bacteria responsible so you can be prescribed antibiotics that are sensitive to the infection.

    I hope you feel better soon.

  • Thanks Keyes. They took a urine sample but have no idea what tests they did on it. Think I will ask to see the doctor tomorrow. That will be 5 days on the antibiotics. I only have 7 days supply, so I should be feeling better, but not.

  • There are some really nasty E. coli urine infections around at the minute which don't respond to Trimethoprim ( which is the usual " first line " treatment for UTI ).

    I would definitely ask your GP for a culture if they haven't sent one, urosepsis can be very nasty.

  • Will do. Thanks Keyes

  • Absolutely with Keyes - you need a culture done urgently. Trouble is it takes 3 days to get the results usually but they then do say the right antibiotic. Or even if it really IS a UTI - and it could be somewhere higher in the tract. I have to say - most of the UTIs I've had DIDN'T respond to trimethoprin! If you aren't feeling any better after 5 days then it suggests it isn't the right antibiotic.

    If you get any worse - if you can't get to see your GP NOW I'd be off to A&E or at least OOH (out of hours) and tell them the entire story.

  • Thank you PMRpro... I fear becoming a paranoid hypochondriac.... But I do worry if I get a new symptom ... I even asked the doctor last Thurday if she thought it could be GCA related I.e blood restriction to the Kidneys. With an illness like ours it is impossible to know what's going on inside! Thank you for your assurance that I'm not being a "loopy time waster" and I need to get it checked further. X

  • Hi Keyes, GP did mention the word "sepsis" this morning. Didn't ask about it? Will do tomorrow though. So much information to take in with brain for - not good. x

  • Hi Babs. I assume by your comment you have the same thing going on at the moment. I sympathise x. "Sepsis" is when the bacteria gets into the blood stream. This can happen if the infection goes untreated or isn't treated with the right antibiotic. "Sepsis" can be serious as once in the blood the bacteria can attack anywhere in the body . (Hope I got that right Keyes)

  • Hi Caroline,

    Yes, sepsis is just a severe infection which can turn into septicaemia ( when the bacteria enters the blood stream ) if untreated or not treated properly.

    It's kind of my specialised subject as I am an ITU nurse ( when well enough to work, have been off 6 months now! ). Thankfully there is much more sepsis awareness now as it wasn't always given the attention that was needed.

  • Hi everyone .... Just got back from GP. Yes they did do a culture test on urine and yes right antibiotic was prescribed. I finish antibiotics on Thurday, have blood test Friday to see if CRP has come down and repeat Urine test next Thursday (a week after stoping antibiotics) just to make sure infection is clear. So all good news. Thanks to everyone for help and advice.

  • That's great, it sounds like your GP is on the ball!

    Unfortunately pred makes all these infections more difficult to shift. Hope you feel better soon.

  • Oh it must be such a relief for you to have reassurance that it isn't a GCA flare but confirmation of a UTI and know that you're on the right treatment. That in itself has probably made you feel loads better already! Long may that continue.

  • Thanks Celtic. And yes you are absolutely right! I do feel better. It's as though my mind has to know what my body is dealing with to make any improvement. Also as a bonus the GP has signed me off work for a week, to rest and recover fully and having just phoned the office to tell them I am so happy with that as half the team are staggering around with "man flu" and you can bet your bottom dollar who would be next in line to catch any bugs going around! 😱

  • A very on the ball practice nurse in the Highlands saved my daughter's life this summer when she recognised a sepsis starting up, shoved a line in immediately while she still could and shipped her off to Inverness with blue lights. She was a very poorly bunny for a day or 2 and that she survived was entirely thanks to that nurse.

  • A bad UTI can make you feel as if you had flu - my worst one made me think I had malaria which isn't as daft as it sounds as i was in Kenya at the time. Infections can also raise CRP as I know to my cost, having had a succession of sinus infections in the past year which my rheumy agreed were probably the cause of a rise in CRP, though not as high as yours is. Good luck - UTIs are so very uncomfortable.

  • Hi Carol, Thankfully after a childhood with more UTIs than I care to remember, I have been relatively UTI-free since having a kidney removed in my teens. However, I did wake up in the middle of the night around a year ago feeling very ill and with uncontrollable shaking from head to foot, frequency and passing blood. A UTI was confirmed as responsible the next morning when the surgery tested a specimen and antibiotics were prescribed. However, whatever the bacteria, it disappeared as quickly as it came before I had chance to start the pills - the only thing I'd had was warm water containing squeezes of lemon juice! The lemon juice turns alkaline in the body and that can help a UTI. I was double-checked with a further specimen a few days later and all was well. So yes you can feel quite ill and "fluey" with a UTI. However, you are not being a "hypochondriac" - you have GCA, and, if it was me, I would be getting everything checked out, and the CRP repeated. I do hope you feel better soon.

  • Carol,

    Another food you can be consuming while UTI is suspicious is cranberry juice and any form of fresh or dried cranberries. This has been reccommended to me over the years when I have had UTI's.

    I do hope that you are feeling better soon, and get quick help from your GP.

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