Asymptomatic Bacteriuria

What is an Asymptomatic Bacteriuria

Asymptomatic bacteriuria is the presence of a large number of bacteria in the urine without the usual symptoms of burning or frequent urination.

What are the causes?

This condition is caused by an increase in bacteria in the urine. This increase can be caused by:

  • Bacteria entering the urinary tract, such as during sex.
  • A blockage in the urinary tract, such as from kidney stones or a tumor.
  • Bladder problems that prevent the bladder from emptying.

What increases the risk?

You are more likely to develop this condition if:

  • You have diabetes mellitus.
  • You are an elderly adult, especially if you are also in a long-term care facility.
  • You are pregnant and in the first trimester.
  • You have kidney stones.
  • You are female.
  • You have had a kidney transplant.
  • You have a leaky kidney tube valve (reflux).
  • You had a urinary catheter for a long period of time.

What are the signs or symptoms?

There are no symptoms of this condition.

How is this diagnosed?

This condition is diagnosed with a urine test. Because this condition does not cause symptoms, it is usually diagnosed when a urine sample is taken to treat or diagnose another condition, such as pregnancy or kidney problems. Most women who are in their first trimester of pregnancy are screened for asymptomatic bacteriuria.

How is this treated?

Usually, treatment is not needed for this condition. Treating the condition can lead to other problems, such as a yeast infection or the growth of bacteria that do not respond to treatment (antibiotic-resistant bacteria). Some people, such as pregnant women and people with kidney transplants, do need treatment with antibiotic medicines to prevent kidney infection (pyelonephritis). In pregnant women, kidney infection can lead to premature labor, fetal growth restriction, or newborn death.

Follow these instructions at home:

Medicines

  • Take over-the-counter and prescription medicines only as told by your health care provider.
  • If you were prescribed an antibiotic medicine, take it as told by your health care provider.Do not stop taking the antibiotic even if you start to feel better.

General instructions

  • Monitor your condition for any changes.
  • Drink enough fluid to keep your urine clear or pale yellow.
  • Go to the bathroom more often to keep your bladder empty.
  • If you are female, keep the area around your vagina and rectum clean. Wipe yourself from front to back after urinating.
  • Keep all follow-up visits as told by your health care provider. This is important.

Contact a health care provider if:

  • You notice any new symptoms, such as back pain or burning while urinating.

Get help right away if:

  • You develop signs of an infection such as:
    • A burning sensation when you urinate.
    • Have pain when you urinate.
    • Develop an intense need to urinate.
    • Urinating more frequently.
    • Back pain or pelvic pain.
    • Fever or chills.
  • You have blood in your urine.
  • Your urine becomes discolored or cloudy.
  • Your urine smells bad.
  • You have severe pain that cannot be controlled with medicine.

Summary

  • Asymptomatic bacteriuria is the presence of a large number of bacteria in the urine without the usual symptoms of burning or frequent urination.
  • Usually, treatment is not needed for this condition. Treating the condition can lead to other problems, such as too much yeast and the growth of antibiotic-resistant bacteria.
  • Some people, such as pregnant women and people with kidney transplants, do need treatment with antibiotic medicines to prevent kidney infection (pyelonephritis).
  • If you were prescribed an antibiotic medicine, take it as told by your health care provider.Do notstop taking the antibiotic even if you start to feel better.
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