ZocdocAnswersAre there home urinary tract infection tests?

Question

Are there home urinary tract infection tests?

Is there a safe, reliable test a person can use at home to determine whether or not they have a urinary tract infection? I understand that doctors can test this for me, but I would much rather figure this out in the privacy of my own home, if that's possible.

Answer

There are many home testing kits for different situations (pregnancy, home drug testing). I do believe that there is a home urinalysis kit out there, but they are not widely used and wouldn't be recommended by most physicians. There are a couple of reasons for this. First, the urinalysis test for a urinary tract infection is not as simple as a yes/no pregnancy test. There are several parts of the test some qualitative and some quantitative that physicians take together as evidence for or against an infection. With that said, there is another reason that the test has limited usefulness. If a women calls me up and says "I have a UTI," I do not require evidence through urinalysis to prescribe antibiotics, especially if she only gets them every once in a while. This is because women are correct 90% of the time when they think they have one (this has been studied). According to this data, there is no reason to do a urinalysis if a women states she has a UTI because the urinalysis is less accurate. I hope that answers your question. I would ask your doctor if he or she needs urinalysis evidence of a UTI before prescribing antibiotics. This would bypass the need for your home urinalysis kits. Good luck.

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