Objective—To evaluate the performance of a veterinary urine dipstick paddle (UDP) for diagnosis and identification of urinary tract infection (UTI) in dogs and cats.
Design—Prospective, randomized, blinded study.
Sample—207 urine specimens.
Procedures—UDPs were inoculated by 2 investigators and incubated according to manufacturer's instructions. Results, including presence or absence of bacterial growth, organism counts, and identification of uropathogens, were compared between investigators and with microbiology laboratory results. A subset of UDPs with bacterial growth was submitted to the laboratory for confirmation.
Results—The laboratory reported 64 (30.9%) specimens had growth of bacteria. Bacterial growth was reported for 63 (30.4%) and 58 (28.0%) of the UDPs by investigators 1 and 2, respectively. Sensitivity and specificity of the UDP for detection of bacterial growth were 97.3% and 98.6%, respectively, for investigator 1 and 89.1% and 99.3%, respectively, for investigator 2. For UPDs with ≥ 105 colony-forming units/mL, organism counts correlated well between the laboratory and investigators 1 (r = 0.95) and 2 (r = 0.89). Pathogen identification was not always accurate. Only 25 of 33 (75.8%) UDPs submitted for confirmation yielded bacteria consistent with those isolated from the original bacterial culture of urine.
Conclusions and Clinical Relevance—The veterinary UDP system was a sensitive test for screening patients for bacterial UTI, but uropathogen identification was not always accurate. When UDPs have bacterial growth, a fresh urine specimen should be submitted to the laboratory to confirm the identity of the organisms and to permit antimicrobial susceptibility testing.