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Diagnostic Tests for Urinary tract infections

Urinary tract infections: Diagnostic Tests

The list of diagnostic tests mentioned in various sources as used in the diagnosis of Urinary tract infections includes:

Home Diagnostic Testing

These home medical tests may be relevant to Urinary tract infections:

Tests and diagnosis discussion for Urinary tract infections:

Urinary Tract Infections in Adults: NIDDK (Excerpt)

To find out whether you have a UTI, your doctor will test a sample of urine for pus and bacteria. You will be asked to give a "clean catch" urine sample by washing the genital area and collecting a "midstream" sample of urine in a sterile container. (This method of collecting urine helps prevent bacteria around the genital area from getting into the sample and confusing the test results.) Usually, the sample is sent to a laboratory, although some doctors' offices are equipped to do the testing.

In the urinalysis test, the urine is examined for white and red blood cells and bacteria. Then the bacteria are grown in a culture and tested against different antibiotics to see which drug best destroys the bacteria. This last step is called a sensitivity test.

Some microbes, like Chlamydia and Mycoplasma, can be detected only with special bacterial cultures. A doctor suspects one of these infections when a person has symptoms of a UTI and pus in the urine, but a standard culture fails to grow any bacteria.

When an infection does not clear up with treatment and is traced to the same strain of bacteria, the doctor will order a test that makes images of the urinary tract. One of these tests is an intravenous pyelogram (IVP), which gives x-ray images of the bladder, kidneys, and ureters. An opaque dye visible on x-ray film is injected into a vein, and a series of x-rays is taken. The film shows an outline of the urinary tract, revealing even small changes in the structure of the tract.

If you have recurrent infections, your doctor also may recommend an ultrasound exam, which gives pictures from the echo patterns of soundwaves bounced back from internal organs. Another useful test is cystoscopy. A cystoscope is an instrument made of a hollow tube with several lenses and a light source, which allows the doctor to see inside the bladder from the urethra. (Source: excerpt from Urinary Tract Infections in Adults: NIDDK)

Urinary Tract Infections in Adults: NIDDK (Excerpt)

Dipsticks that change color when an infection is present are now available without prescription. The strips detect nitrite, which is formed when bacteria change nitrate in the urine to nitrite. The test can detect about 90 percent of UTIs when used with the first morning urine specimen and may be useful for women who have recurrent infections. (Source: excerpt from Urinary Tract Infections in Adults: NIDDK)

Cystoscopy and Ureteroscopy: NIDDK (Excerpt)

When you have a urinary problem, your doctor may use a cystoscope to see the inside of your bladder and urethra. The urethra is the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. The cystoscope has lenses like a telescope or microscope. These lenses let the doctor focus on the inner surfaces of the urinary tract. Some cystoscopes use optical fibers (flexible glass fibers) that carry an image from the tip of the instrument to a viewing piece at the other end. The cystoscope is as thin as a pencil and has a light at the tip. Many cystoscopes have extra tubes to guide other instruments for procedures to treat urinary problems (Source: excerpt from Cystoscopy and Ureteroscopy: NIDDK)

Urinary Tract Infections: NWHIC (Excerpt)

Your doctor will test a urine sample for pus and bacteria. Although your doctor may begin treatment before the bacterial cultures are back from the lab, the cultures will confirm the diagnosis and may cause a change in the antibiotic chosen. Occasionally when a treatment fails to clear up an infection, the doctor may order a test that makes an image of the urinary tract to identify whether there are structural changes contributing to the infection or impeding treatment. (Source: excerpt from Urinary Tract Infections: NWHIC)

 

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