Urine Culture

Quick Facts

  • A urine test
  • Used to diagnose urinary tract infections
  • Looks for bacteria in urine

All Urology San Antonio Providers may request or recommend a culture if a UTI is suspected.

What is a Urine Culture?

Urine Culture

A urine culture is a test that looks for and identifies bacteria in urine.  It is used to help diagnose and treat a urinary tract infection (UTI).  Depending on the results of the culture, a sensitivity test may be ordered to determine which antibiotics will be most effective.


To perform a culture, a small sample of urine is added to a substance that promotes bacterial growth.  If no growth is detected, the urine culture is negative.  However, if it contains bacteria or yeast, an infection is present.

A culture us used to determine:

the cause of a urinary tract infection (UTI)
the best antibiotics for treatment(using a sensitivity test
if treatment for UTI is working

A culture is generally used in conjunction with a urinalysis when a urinary tract infection is suspected.

Urine Culture Results

Negative Urine Culture

A negative urine culture indicates there isn’t bacteria or other organisms present in the sample.

Positive Urine Culture

If there is a single type of bacteria growing at a high rate, it’s typically considered a positive urine culture.

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