The types of bacteria detected in a NAAT


Q: Will a NAAT detect Mycoplasma urethra , Ureoplasma urealyticum, or any other bacteria? I had a NAAT performed on a urine sample for Gonorrhea and Chlamyida, however the test came back negative. From what I am being told, this test is extremely accurate. Will this test also detect other types of bacteria in the urine?

Symptoms:  Burning during urination, discharge, delayed urination, weak urine flow, cloudy urine

A:   Hello. Welcome to Ask The Doctor.
NAAT tests are very specific and accurate, they are done to pick up common infections at the earliest soon after an exposure.
Mycoplasma and Ureaplasma and all other organisms contain Nucleic acid. NAAT is Nucleic Acid Amplification Test. So it will surely detect the organism.
However, if we talk in particular to these two, we usually do culture to detect them.
In males, a swab from urethral discharge is taken and in females Vaginal swab is taken.
NAAT is able to detect almost all the kinds of bacteria, but the search is target based, means if we want to search Mycoplasma we will do NAAT for it only. The test won't test us if in case any other organism is there.
That's why culture is a preferred test as it can grow any organism.
I hope it helps.
Stay Healthy.

Comments / Follow Ups

Patient: Does this mean that when the urine is sent for a NAAT, it needs to be specifically tested for the certain type of organism in order to find it or will it give a result for any type of bacterial organism found?
Doctor: Hi.
It depends on the laboratory and the technology they are using.
In general yes we usually specify that which organisn we are looking for. This is the reason we prefer to do culture over NAAT.
Good Luck.
Patient: Can these Mycoplasma urethra and Ureoplasma urealyticum be passed on from one's mouth to the genitals and vice versa?
Doctor: Hi.
Usually they can pass from genitals to mouth but opposite is also possible.

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