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Urinary Disorders

UTI symptoms without bacteria in urine.

07/31/2001

Question:

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am a sexually active 20 year old female, and I have a history of UTI`s. In the past, they have just cleared up of their own accord, by me taking cranberry pills, or in severe cases, taking prescribed antibiotics. Usually though, the UTI`s cleared up after consuming heaps of water, and also with the assistance of cranberry.

About 3 months ago, I had a UTI, and the symptoms haven`t gone away since. I went to the doctors, after the UTI failed to disappear after a couple of days, and a urine sample was taken, which showed positive under a nitrate test. I was prescribed antibiotics, which failed to cure the UTI. I went to another doctor for a second opinion, where he did the same, and prescribed another set of antibiotics, and the UTI still persisted. Then, I went and had cultures grown from my urine samples, to investigate which antibiotics the bacteria was sensitive to. They did this, I was prescribed further antibiotics (to which i was supposedly sensitive to) which also failed to work.

Most recently, I have been to have urine samples analysed, and they are now not showing up any nitrates to indicate the existance of bacteria, and cultures fail to grow from the samples.

The antibiotics I have taken are norfloxin, augmentin, trimethoprim, and another penicillin based one, which name escapes me.

Problem is, that I still have the symptoms of a UTI, such as a constant need to urinate, a slight burning sensation when urinating, and when not urinating there is a dull stinging sensation. I have also been tested for STDs, and vaginal infections, but everything is comming back negative. The doctors just don`t seem to have any idea of whats happening, and are planning to send me to a Urologist.

Essentially, I have all the symptoms of a UTI, but without any bacteria present in my Urine.

I am on the waiting list to have a scan of my kidneys, but I am very concerned about this, could you tell me what you think it might be, or any ideas. I understand that you are not able to give a diagnosis without physically examining a patient, but if you have any insight into what may be causing this, I would be most appreciative.

Many Thanks

Answer:

I have seen patients with symptoms you describe but have negative cultures. I believe some have an infection of the urethra which can cause similar symptoms. Treatment has been long term - 3 month intake of low dose antibiotic many of which you have already taken.

I hope this information is helpful to you. I would agree with pursuing the studies that are to be done.

For more information:

Go to the Urinary Disorders health topic, where you can:

Response by:

Martin I Resnick, MD Martin I Resnick, MD
Formerly, Professor of Urology
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University