VCOM Research Day Program Book 2023

Medical Student Research Case Reports

17 Purple Urine Bag Syndrome: A Manmade Manifestation

Ashly Kaur; Zoya Iqbaluddin, DO; Peter Recupero DO Corresponding author:

Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine- Virginia Campus Riverside Regional Medical Center

Purple urine bag syndrome is a benign, rare side effect of a urinary tract infection, in which a patient’s urine appears purple only when in the urine catheter bag system. This may be seen in patients who require long term catheterization or elderly women who have chronic constipation. While a harmless side effect itself, its presentation can be concerning for patients and caregivers; therefore, more awareness of this side effect is warranted. In addition, the population at risk for purple urine bag syndrome are generally ill. Purple urine may be the first sign of an infection and serious risk factor for mortality. Herein, we highlight a case of a chronically catheterized, quadriplegic

35-year-old male, with signs of a suprapubic catheter infection, leading to a possible source for a urinary tract infection. He claimed his urine has changed to a purple color for approximately one month. Patient was placed on vancomycin and cefepime for broad spectrum coverage. Urinalysis determined the patient had a urinary tract infection with Morganella morganii . The patient was then transitioned to cefepime only and later cefpodoxime. Patient’s symptoms began to resolve after treatment and he was discharged with home antibiotics to complete, for a total antibiotic course of 14 days. This case will help raise further physician and patient awareness

of a rare, distressing side effect of using a polyvinyl chlorine urine catheter bag. In addition, while purple urine bag syndrome is commonly seen in women and the elderly, this report will contribute to the suspected population in which purple urine can be seen.


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