The presence of a significant amount of bacteria in a properly collected urine sample from a person without symptoms of illness or signs of a urinary tract infection (UTI) is defined as asymptomatic bacteriuria.
Approximately 1 in 10 women develop asymptomatic bacteriuria during pregnancy.
Pregnant women are at an increased risk for UTIs, starting from the 6th week of pregnancy and peaking in weeks 22-24. About 90% of pregnant women, due to pregnancy hormones, develop dilation of the ureters and a decrease in ureteral muscle tone that persists until delivery, known as pregnancy hydronephrosis. The increased volume and decreased tone of the bladder, along with decreased ureteral tone, contribute to increased urinary stasis and ureterovesical reflux, which is the backflow of urine. Additionally, the physiological increase in circulating blood volume during pregnancy decreases urine concentration. More than half of pregnant women develop glucosuria (presence of glucose in the urine), which stimulates bacterial growth in the urine. All these factors reduce the ability of the urinary tract to resist invading bacteria, either collectively or individually contributing to the development of urinary tract infections during pregnancy.
The gold standard for detecting bacteria in urine is urine culture (microbiological culture of urine on special media).
To prevent complications caused by asymptomatic bacteriuria (such as anemia, high blood pressure, and even preeclampsia, a severe form of pregnancy-related hypertension), and low birth weight, a proper consultation can help you.