Urine Culture Results:
Urine Culture Overview:
A urine culture is a test that can detect bacteria in your urine. This test can find and identify the germs that cause a urinary tract infection (UTI). Bacteria, which typically cause UTIs, can enter the urinary tract through the urethra. In the sterile environment of your urinary tract, these bacteria can grow rapidly and develop into an infection.
In our office, we will collect a urine sample when a patient arrives for their visit. The urine is then studied in three ways.
1. First, just by visualizing the urine sample you can detect blood, cloudiness, odor, floating elements that all gives clues to a urinary tract infection or disease.
2. A urinalysis is then performed in the office that documents:
-The presence of microscopic blood that cannot be seen with our eyes.
-Leukocytes or white blood cells that can indicate inflammation or infection.
-Nitrites that are converted when bacteria are present and usually indicates infection.
-pH that can change with infection or diet.
-Glucose which is usually a sign of new or poorly controlled diabetes.
-Creatinine and protein ratio that is used as a predictor of kidney function.
3. Sometimes the urine is obviously infected, but sometimes can look surprisingly normal even in a patient who has a real infection.
This is why as long as we have enough urine given as a sample it needs to be sent for a "Culture & Sensitivity."
What Affects the Test: Reasons why the results may not be conclusive include:
What is a "Urine Culture and Sensitivity"?
A Urine Culture & Sensitivity is where a urine sample is prepared in a lab, grown and read by a lab technician. The urine C & S documents whether bacteria is present, how high the bacterial count is, and which antibiotics are best for treating it.
An antibiotic sensitivity or susceptibility test is done to help choose the antibiotic that will be most effective against the specific types of bacteria infecting an individual person.
Some types of bacteria are resistant to certain antibiotics because of differences in their genetic material genes. Infections caused by resistant bacteria are not cured by treatment with those antibiotics.
The Process of sending a Urine Culture and Sensitivity:
Suspicious urine or urine from a patient that is symptomatic is packaged, labeled and picked up by a lab directly from our office that same day. The urine travels to either a central Quest, Labcorp or specialty lab location, many of which are out of state. This transit alone can take a day. The final results are usually available within 5 to 7 business days. Sometimes, we can call the lab and receive results earlier when necessary.
For positive results, where an infection is documented, we will call you immediately. Even if we have given you treatment in advance with the suspicion that there was an infection present, we will call to make sure that you are taking the prescribed medication, or make sure you are put on the correct antibiotic according to the culture sensitivities.
It is important to complete a full course of antibiotics that are prescribed to you even if you are feeling better in a short time. A few doses may have been enough to get the bacterial count down so that it is no longer symptomatic, but even if one bacteria is left behind a full blown infection can recur after several days.
Drug-resistant bacteria usually develop because the entire course of antibiotic treatment was not completed. Stopping drug treatment early kills only the bacteria that are sensitive to the drugs, allowing the resistant bacteria to multiply and cause another infection.
Will I become "resistant" if I take too many antibiotics?
A body does not become resistant to an antibiotic but the bacteria that is causing an infection at the time can be.
Outside Lab Results: Testosterone, PSA, Bun/Cr and any others:
All blood tests are performed at an outside lab: either Quest or Labcorp, depending on your insurance. We can help guide you to the correct lab when we give you a prescription. The blood test results come back in just a few days so you can make your follow up appointment for one week after the labs are drawn. We prefer not give results over the phone. We believe that there is better patient care, follow through and treatment planning when the test results and review are done with the patient present.