Prevalence and associated risk factors of asymptomatic bacteriuria in ante-natal clients in a large teaching hospital in Ghana

  • AK Labi
  • AE Yawson
  • GY Ganyaglo
  • MJ Newman
Keywords: Asymptomatic bacteriuria, ante-natal clients, antibiotic sensitivity, tertiary hospital, Ghana


Introduction: Asymptomatic bacteriuria, the presence of bacteria in urine without symptoms of acute urinary tract infection, predisposes pregnant women to the development of urinary tract infections and pyelonephritis, with an attendant pregnancy related complications.
Objective: To measure the prevalence of asymptomatic bacteriuria among ante-natal clients at the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital in Ghana and its’ associated risk factors.
Methods: A cross-sectional study involving 274 antenatal clients was conducted over a period of 4 weeks. A face to face questionnaire was completed and midstream urine collected for culture and antimicrobial susceptibility testing.
Results: The prevalence of asymptomatic bacteriuria was 5.5%. It was associated with sexual activity during pregnancy (Fisher’s Exact 5.871, p-value 0.0135), but not with sexual frequency. There were no significant associations with educational status, parity, gestational age, marital status and the number of foetuses carried. The commonest organism isolated was Enterococcus spp (26.7%) although the enterobacteriaceae formed the majority of isolated organisms (46.7%). Nitrofurantoin was the antibiotic with the highest sensitivity to all the isolated organisms.
Conclusions: The prevalence of asymptomatic bacteriuria among ante-natal clients at this large teaching hospital in Ghana is 5.5%, which is lower than what has been found in other African settings. Enterococcus spp was the commonest causative organism. However, due to the complications associated with asymptomatic bacteriuria, a policy to screen and treat- all pregnant women attending the hospital, is worth considering.

Key words: Asymptomatic bacteriuria, ante-natal clients, antibiotic sensitivity, tertiary hospital, Ghana


Journal Identifiers

print ISSN: 0016-9560