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A urine culture is a test to find germs (such as bacteria) that can cause an infection. A sample of urine is added to a substance that promotes the growth of germs. If no germs grow, the culture is negative. If germs that can cause infection grow, the culture is positive. The type of germ may be identified using a microscope or chemical tests.
A urine culture may be done to find out if symptoms like pain or burning when urinating are from a urinary tract infection (UTI). The test can also find the cause of a UTI and help determine the best treatment for a UTI.
You will need to collect a urine sample. You will need to drink enough fluids and avoid urinating so that you will be able to collect a urine sample.
The first urine of the day is best because bacterial levels will be higher. Avoid urinating just before having this test.
You will be asked to collect a clean-catch midstream urine sample for testing.
The test will take a few minutes.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to keep a list of the medicines you take. Ask your doctor when you can expect to have your test results.
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Adaptation Date: 3/2/2022
Adapted By: Alberta Health Services
Adaptation Reviewed By: Alberta Health Services
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