Many different disorders and conditions can affect the urinary system and the reproductive system, collectively known as the urogenital system. Specifically, it’s at the point where the two systems merge. Symptoms of an infection affecting this area are sometimes vague, or it may not be clear whether the source is viral or bacterial. Getting prompt test results avoids the unnecessary use of antibiotics and helps healthcare professionals provide prompt, appropriate care, especially with infections that may be unknowingly passed on to others.
Why Urogenital Testing May Be Done
Because the urinary system connects with the reproductive system, the source of a patient’s symptoms may not always be clear. With sexually transmitted diseases, in particular, there is often no obvious signs of a problem until symptoms appear later, some of which may include painful urination and thick, cloudy, or bloody discharge from the penis or vagina. Urogenital testing is often recommended for the following reasons:
- A patient has an suspected urinary tract infection
- It’s suspected that a patient has an STD
- To determine if medications being taken for another condition are causing reproductive or urinary system issues
- To confirm or rule out bladder or prostate cancer as a source of symptoms
The testing method used will depend on what type of condition is suspected based on a patient’s medical history and the results of an initial examination. Tests performed for common urologic conditions like urinary incontinence and hematuria (blood in the urine) may include a blood urea nitrogen (BUN) test to evaluate kidney functioning, a creatinine test that may indicate a urinary blockage, and phosphate tests.
Preventative Screening Tests
Some urogenital tests are done for preventative screening purposes. A prostate-specific antigen (PSA) test, for example, is commonly recommended for men over the age of 50 to check for prostate cancer. A Pap test is done to screen for cervical cancer in women.
Reproductive System Testing
Urogenital tests may be ordered to determine the cause of issues with the reproductive system. For men, such tests may be done to determine the cause of male factor infertility, impotence, or erectile dysfunction. A combination FSH/LH/estradiol test may be recommended for women unable to get pregnant during the period of time prior to the typical age of menopause. An infectious screen can identify conditions such as chlamydia, hepatitis, HIV, syphilis, and gonorrhea that may be affecting a patient’s urogenital system and causing issues with attempts to become pregnant.
Urogenital Urine Testing
A urinalysis is the type of test that is typically performed on a urine sample. Abnormalities with cells, cell fragments, and various substances can confirm a suspected urinary tract infection or suggest issues related to diabetes or kidney and liver functioning. A urinalysis is also a common test performed as part of a routine pregnancy checkup.
The most common collection methods for urogenital tests are blood and urine samples. Genital swabs are sometimes used to collect samples for STD or STI tests.
Make confident, well-informed patient care decisions with our accurate and convenient urogenital test results, available within 24-hours for most tests. There’s no denying the importance of the early detection and treatment of conditions that could affect urinary and reproductive systems in patients. The information our tests provide can be used to make or confirm a diagnosis, for preventative screening purposes, or to track the progress of treatments.