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Background: Urinary tract infection (UTI) is a major global public health issue. The gold standard for diagnosing UTI is urine culture. This is however labour intensive and time consuming. Many prescribers therefore rely on urinalysis in diagnosing UTI. This study sought to evaluate the performance of some parameters of urinalysis as predictors of urine culture positivity. The common causative agents and their antibiotic susceptibility patterns were also determined.
Methods: A cross sectional study was carried out at the University of Cape Coast Hospital from July 2017 – December 2017 among out-patients. The performance characteristics of leukocyte esterase (3+) and nitrite reactions were estimated and compared with urine culture. Antimicrobial susceptibility tests were done using disc diffusion technique described by Kirby-Bauer.
Results: Prevalence of UTI in this study was 30.0% (64/213). The most prevalent pathogen was E. coli (20, 31.2%), followed by S. saprophyticus (9, 14.1%). Most of the bacteria (52, 94.5%) were sensitive to amikacin, followed by ciprofloxacin (42, 76.3%). The most sensitive (94.4%) of the parameters was pus cells [>5 white blood cells (WBC) per high power field (HPF)] and the least sensitive was the nitrite test (21.0%). The leukocyte esterase test showed the highest accuracy of 91.1%.
Conclusion: The study supports the recommendation of the use of oral ciprofloxacin as the first line treatment of uncomplicated UTI by the Ghana Standard Treatment Guidelines (2017).
Funding: No funding was provided for this study.
Keywords: urine tract infection, urinalysis, uropathogens, Cape Coast