Urinary Tract Infections in College and Non-College Women from Colombia

Lucy Margarita Villafañe-Ferrer, Mavianis Pinilla-Pérez, Daniela Giraldo-Reyes, Adriana Rosa Martínez-Ramos, Karen Lastre-Machado


Objective: To compare college and non-college women in terms of the frequency of, etiology of, and risk factors associated with urinary tract infections. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study conducted in Cartagena, Colombia, with 258 female college students and 256 female non-college students from 15 to 34 years old. The participants were interviewed and completed a questionnaire assessing the risk factors associated with urinary tract infections. Urine samples were examined by urinalysis and to look for signs of urinary tract infection, when found, were confirmed by culture. Isolated bacteria were tested for antimicrobial susceptibility using the Kirby–Bauer test. A chi-square test and binary logistic regression were used to analyze the data. Results: Urinary tract infections were found in 7.8% of the participating college women and 9.4% of the participating non-college women. E. coli was the most frequent uropathogen found in the members of the 2 groups. The majority of the isolated bacteria were highly resistant to β-lactams. Binary logistic regression analysis showed that in the college women, the predictor variables of having a urinary tract infection were the presence of nitrites, leucocytes, and urinary urgency. In the case of the non-college women, the predictor variables were the presence of nitrites and cystitis in the last 2 years. Conclusion: The frequencies of urinary tract infection were similar in both groups. These individuals might have been taking non-prescribed antibiotics or failing to comply with a prescribed treatment or bacteria are of hospital origin.


Urinary Tract Infections, Women, Bacteria, Drug Resistance, Microbial, Risk factors

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