Which patients require a regular urine dipstick test at home?
Hello! I would like to find out who are the users of the urine dipstick test. In particular, is there a group of patients who requires the regular use of the urine dipstick test at home? Thank you.
A great advantage of urine disptick is that you can get information immediately in different clinical settings. Typically, it is used at the bedside when a patient is hospitalized or in an outpatient clinic when you would like to get clinical information rapidly while waiting for lab confirmation.
I agree with Dr Tzeyeong Teng's previous answer as it is not commonly used at home, but many times it is underutilized as you can see in my examples below.
Urine dipstick can be used in home care for patients with poor mobility or very frail or living far away or too busy to come to the clinic. Also, as a telemedicine option to communicate progress or change to a doctor.
I would consider home disptick monitoring, after counseling and training, for some other specific situations, to mention some:
-Patients with recurrent urine infections that maybe have been prescribed pre-emptive antibiotics (to start as soon the symptoms of a new urine infection appears). So, the dipstick help them to corroborate they indeed need to start the course of antibiotics.
-Patients with recurrent nephrotic syndrome, who can use to check protein leakage as soon as they see frothy urine or legs start to swell, so they can seek prompt medical advice.
-Lupus nephritis patients to check for recurrence of nephritis (especially if frequently recurrent), and then to communicate with the doctor.
-Diabetic patients at risk of diabetic ketoacidosis in case their sugar goes high, as seek prompt medical attention.
Wishing you the best possible health, Dr Francisco
Hi paperaeroplanes, thank you for your question.
The urine dipstick test is a point-of-contact test that can give immediate results. Some information that can be gleaned from the urine dipstick analysis include the pH of urine, presence of protein, sugar, red blood cells, white blood cells, bacteria, ketones and bile.
The users of urine dipstick analysis can range from patients with chronic medical conditions such as diabetes, kidney diseases etc to usually well patients who present with specific symptoms such as pain on passing urine, urge to pass urine, blood in the urine etc to even well patients who just want a screening analysis.
This is usually done at a clinic setting, and regular use of the urine dipstick at home is uncommon.