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Urine Culture

By Bradley D. Figler, MD, Assistant Professor, Department of Urology, Thomas Jefferson University

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Urine cultures, in which bacteria from a urine sample are grown in a laboratory, are done to diagnose a urinary tract infection. Cultures are not part of routine urinalysis (see Urinalysis). The sample of urine must be obtained by the clean-catch method (see Obtaining a Clean-Catch Urine Sample) or by briefly inserting a sterile catheter through the urethra into the bladder.