Monday, April 6, 2015

Urine is not sterile, says research

Debunking the common belief that normal urine is sterile, researchers have discovered bacteria in the urine of healthy females. The study which appeared in the journal European Urology could lead to new treatment for lower urinary tract disorders.

"The discovery of bacteria in the urine of healthy females
provides an opportunity to advance our understanding of
bladder health and disease," said lead study author Alan Wolfe, professor at Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine (SSOM).

"Physicians and researchers must reassess their assumptions
surrounding the cause of lower urinary tract disorders and
consider new approaches to prevent and treat these debilitating health issues," Wolfe noted.

The researchers evaluated urine specimens collected directly
from the bladder through an aspiration or a catheter to avoid contamination. These specimens were analysed using an expanded quantitative urine culture (EQUC) technique that identifies bacteria not
detectable by the standard urine culture techniques typically used to diagnose urinary tract syndromes.

"While traditional urine cultures have been the gold standard to identify urine disorders in the past, they do not detect most bacteria and have limited utility as a result," Wolfe said.

Through their analysis, the researchers found that certain
bacteria in the female bladder may contribute to symptoms of
urinary incontinence. They also revealed that some bacteria are
more common in women with urgency urinary incontinence
than in healthy women.