Table 4

Common causes of falsely low bacterial counts in urine specimens

Colonisation without infection
Dilutional through excessive rehydration
Acidification or alkalinisation of urine
Urinary frequency
Concurrent use of a systemic antimicrobial agent and/or other growth inhibitor
Use of a topical cleansing agent with antimicrobial activity during specimen collection
Haematogenous infection of the urinary tract
Obstruction of the renal tract distal to the site of infection
Infection with a fastidious or slow growing organism