Detection of significant bacteriuria by use of the iQ200 automated urine microscope

Enno Stürenburg*, Jan Kramer, Gerhard Schön, Georg Cachovan, Ingo Sobottka

*Corresponding author for this work
9 Citations (Scopus)


In the microbiology laboratory, there is an augmented need for rapid screening methods for the detection of bacteria in urine samples, since about two-thirds of these samples will not yield any bacteria or will yield insignificant growth when cultured. Thus, a reliable screening method can free up laboratory resources and can speed up the reporting of a negative urine result. In this study, we have evaluated the detection of leukocytes, bacteria, and a new sediment indicator, the "all small particles" (ASP), by an automated instrument, the iQ200 urine analyzer, to detect negative urine samples that can be excluded from culture. A coupled automated strip reader (iChem Velocity), enabling the detection of nitrite and leukocyte esterase, was tested in parallel. In total, 963 urine samples were processed through both conventional urine culture and the iQ200/iChem Velocity workstation. Using the data, a multivariate regression model was established, and the predicted specificity and the possible reduction in urine cultures were calculated for the indicators and their respective combinations (leukocytes plus bacteria plus ASP and leukocyte esterase plus nitrite). Among all options, diagnostic performance was best using the whole microscopic content of the sample (leukocytes plus bacteria plus ASP). By using a cutoff value of ≥104 CFU/ml for defining a positive culture, a given sensitivity of 95% resulted in a specificity of 61% and a reduction in urine cultures of 35%. By considering the indicators alone, specificity and the culture savings were both much less satisfactory. The regression model was also used to determine possible cutoff values for running the instrument as part of daily routine. By using a graphical representation of all combinations possible, we derived cutoff values for leukocyte, bacterial, and ASP count, which should enable the iQ200 microscope to screen out approximately one-third of the urine samples, significantly reducing the workload in the microbiology laboratory.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Clinical Microbiology
Issue number8
Pages (from-to)2855-2860
Number of pages6
Publication statusPublished - 01.01.2014


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