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How to obtain Urine samples from your child or baby
This leaflet explains how to obtain a urine sample from your baby or child. There are different reasons why your child may need their urine tested. Please ensure that the doctor/nurse requesting the sample has fully explained why they need the sample. The most common reason is to check for a urinary tract infection (please ask your nurse/doctor for the leaflet on urinary tract infections).
Clean catch urine sample
A ‘clean catch’ urine sample is the recommended method for urine collection as it provides the most accurate and reliable results (NICE 2007). A ‘clean catch’ urine sample is literally that; when the child passes urine you need to ‘catch’ some of it into a clean pot. This method reduces the risk of a contaminated urine sample as the sample does not come into contact with any bacteria from the child’s skin or back passage.
When is a good time to get a sample?
Good times to collect a sample can include:
After a feed
When changing a nappy
How to obtain a ‘clean catch’ urine sample
1. Your child’s Doctor/nurse will give you a small sterile plastic bowl and a small specimen pot with a white lid.
2. Wash your hands with soap and water and then dry them
3. Wash your child’s genital area using soap and water (not baby wipes), drying from front to back. Do not apply cream or talcum powder
4. Wash your hands
5. Hold the bowl by your child’s genital area and catch the urine. If your child opens his bowels (does a poo) at the same time, you will need to start the process again from step one as the bacteria from the faeces (poo) will have contaminated the urine sample.
6. If you are in hospital give the bowl to your child’s nurse.
7. Wash your hands.
If you are at home you will need to empty the sample from the plastic bowl into the specimen pot, taking care not to touch the inside. One third full is usually fine (the doctor/nurse will specify if there needs to be an exact amount). Complete the details on the outside of the specimen pot. Take the sample to your child’s GP or the hospital’s Paediatric Assessment Unit as soon as possible. Please phone your GP prior to taking the sample to check on their sample collection times.
* Potty trained children may find it easier to pass urine into the sterile plastic bowl if it is placed in their potty.
* Older/more able children can obtain their own urine sample by following the same instructions
Some results can be obtained straight away when the nurse carry’s out a ‘dip urinalysis test’ on the urine sample. Depending on these results and the reason for the sample it may also be sent to the laboratory for further testing. The results from these tests usually take between 2-3 days. You can phone your child’s GP for the results. However If the results are abnormal the hospital or your child’s GP will contact you with any advice on treatment/follow up.
It is not uncommon for the Doctor/nurse requesting the sample to ask for two samples at two different occasions. We hope that this leaflet has helped. Please contact the hospital’s Paediatric
Assessment Unit (01908 996368), the Children’s Community Nurses (01908 996518) or your child’s GP if you have any other questions.
References can be supplied for this information contained within this information if required from the Specialty Dept/Author.