What Does It Mean To Have Protein In Urine


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Detecting And Quantifying Proteinuria

Protein in my urine: Should I Worry?

The results are graded as negative , trace , 1+ , 2+ , 3+ or 4+ . This method preferentially detects albumin and is less sensitive to globulins or parts of globulins .12

The sulfosalicylic acid turbidity test qualitatively screens for proteinuria. The advantage of this easily performed test is its greater sensitivity for proteins such as Bence Jones. The SSA method requires a few milliliters of freshly voided, centrifuged urine. An equal amount of 3 percent SSA is added to that specimen. Turbidity will result from protein concentrations as low as 4 mg per dL . False-positive results can occur when a patient is taking penicillin or sulfonamides and within three days after the administration of radiographic dyes. A false-negative result occurs with highly buffered alkaline urine or a dilute specimen.

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Too Much Protein In Urine What Causes It And How To Treat It

What does protein in urine mean? Is it dangerous to have elevated protein levels in the urine? Learn all about this condition and see how to treat it!

Not always the presence of protein in the urine means that there is a health problem, strictly speaking. Sometimes this depends on circumstances. But if this condition persists, it means that there is a difficulty in the functioning of the kidneys.

Proteins in urine are sometimes a sign that the kidneys are not working as well as they should. In principle, this condition does not generate any symptoms and is only detectable by a urine test. Therefore, most of the time it goes unnoticed in the initial phases.

We all have proteins in the blood. These play a very important role in the body, since they help to configure the bones and muscles, as well as to control the amount of fluids in the blood and to prevent infections, among others. However, these do not have to pass into the urine.

When there is protein in the urine, abundantly and persistently, it means that the kidneys are making an incorrect filter. They should process and dispose of waste and not proteins. It is an early sign of kidney problems, which you should address immediately.

Urine Protein And Urine Protein To Creatinine Ratio

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How Is Protein In The Urine Treated During Pregnancy

Trace amounts of protein may not be an issue and can be monitored by your healthcare provider. For higher amounts, treatment will depend on the cause.

In earlier pregnancy, when causes may be due to underlying chronic health conditions, youll work with your doctor to find the appropriate treatment thats safe for both you and your baby.

Infections, like UTIs, can be safely treated with antibiotics. Other complications may need more monitoring. This may mean seeing specialists outside of your OB-GYN.

Preeclampsia is treated in a variety of ways. Your treatment will depend on how far along you are, how severe your condition is, and how you and baby are faring. The most effective treatment for preeclampsia is delivery, though that may not be possible if youre not far enough along.

Other treatments:

  • Frequent monitoring. Your doctor will likely have you come in for testing more regularly to monitor changes in your health or your babys health.
  • Blood pressure medications. Antihypertensives may be used to lower blood pressure when its particularly high. There are options that are safe during pregnancy.
  • Bed rest. Doctors used to regularly prescribe bed rest to those with preeclampsia. Opinions are mixed on how effective this is, though. Generally, bed rest is no longer recommended due to an increased risk of blood clots and other social and economic factors.

When To Get Tested

Protein In Urine : Causes, Picture, Symptoms and Treatment

As part of a routine physical, often as part of a urinalysis urine total protein and urine protein to creatinine ratio have traditionally been used as important indicators of kidney disease and as a follow-up testing for monitoring the disease. However, albumin to creatinine ratio is now the preferred testing for these purposes.

UPCR should still be requested to identify preeclampsia in pregnant women and where the excess urine total protein is suspected to be other than albumin.

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How The Test Is Performed

After you provide a urine sample, it is tested. The health care provider uses a dipstick made with a color-sensitive pad. The color on the dipstick tells the provider the level of protein in your urine.

If needed, your provider may ask you to collect your urine at home over 24 hours. Your provider will tell you how to do this. Follow instructions exactly so that the results are accurate.

Testing For Protein In Urine

The only way to diagnose proteinuria is through a urine test, which measures the amount of protein in your urine.

The test takes place in a doctors office. During the procedure, you urinate into a specimen cup. The doctor places a dipstick, or a small plastic stick coated with chemicals, into the urine sample. If it has too much protein, the stick will change color.

The rest of the urine will be sent to a lab, where it will be examined under a microscope.

If the doctor thinks you have kidney concerns, theyll repeat the urine test three times in 3 months. This helps them rule out temporary causes of proteinuria.

A doctor might also use the following tests to determine whats causing your proteinuria:

  • 24-hour urine protein test. In this test, the doctor collects multiple urine samples over 1 day and sends them to a lab.

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What Can Be Done If The Urinalysis Reveals Proteinuria With Signs Of Bleeding And Inflammation

If the urinalysis reveals inflammation or bleeding, your veterinarian may recommend further testing to look for conditions such as bacterial infection, bladder stones, prostatic disease , vaginitis , and cancer, etc. Following treatment, a repeat urinalysis is recommended to determine if the inflammation, bleeding, and proteinuria have disappeared.

Treatment For Proteinuria In Cats

Does protein in urine mean kidney damage? Are bubbles in urine normal?

Once your vet figures out what is causing your cats proteinuria, they will prescribe the best course of treatment. Treatments vary depending on the cause.

  • Urinary tract infections are often treated with antibiotics and have an excellent chance of recovery.

  • Inflammation of the bladder without infection is typically treated with anti-inflammatories and pain medications.

  • Bladder crystals can be treated with diet changes and increased water intake.

  • Bladder stones are usually dissolved via diet change or are surgically removed from the bladder via a procedure termed cystotomy.

  • Polyps in the bladder often can be surgically removed via bladder surgery or cystoscopy.

  • Treating and controlling diseases such as hypertension, hyperthyroidism, pancreatitis, and diabetes may reduce lessen or even resolve proteinuria in cats.

  • Kidney disease or kidney failure treatment depends on the severity of the disease.

The goal of therapy in cats with kidney disease is to decrease the proteinuria by more than 90%, which may not be possible if the disease is severe.

Treatment may include only a diet change to a low-protein, low-phosphorus diet in the early stages of kidney disease. As the disease progresses, fluid may be administered under the skin. You can be educated on how to perform this therapy at home.

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What Happens During A Protein In Urine Test

You will need to give a urine sample for the test. A health care professional may give you a cleansing wipe, a small container, and instructions for how to use the “clean catch” method to collect your urine sample. It’s important to follow these instructions so that germs from your skin don’t get into the sample:

  • Wash your hands with soap and water and dry them.
  • Open the container without touching the inside.
  • Clean your genital area with the cleansing wipe:
  • Urinate into the toilet for a few seconds and then stop the flow. Start urinating again, this time into the container. Don’t let the container touch your body.
  • Collect at least an ounce or two of urine into the container. The container should have markings to show how much urine is needed.
  • Finish urinating into the toilet.
  • Put the cap on the container and return it as instructed.
  • If you have hemorrhoids that bleed or are having your menstrual period, tell your provider before your test.

    In certain cases, your provider may ask you to collect all of your urine during a 24-hour period. A “24-hour urine sample test” may provide more complete results, because the amount of protein and other substances in urine can vary throughout the day.

    Does Kidney Damage Go Away

    In general, it does not. The goal is to detect kidney disease and damage early to minimize the damage and prolong kidney function. If the proteinuria detected is due to a kidney infection or urinary tract infection, the kidneys frequently will return to normal function as the infection resolves. If it is due to a medication, then in most cases the kidneys are likely to return to normal or near-normal function when the medication is stopped.

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    What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Proteinuria

    You may not have any symptoms in the early stages of proteinuria. In advanced stages of proteinuria, symptoms may include:

    • Swelling in your face, belly, feet or ankles.
    • More frequent urination.
    • Congestive heart failure.

    What level of proteinuria is concerning?

    A normal amount of protein in your pee is less than 150 milligrams per day. If you have more than 150 milligrams of protein in your pee per day, you have proteinuria. The upper limit of normal can vary a bit between laboratories.

    If you have 3 to 3.5 grams of protein in your pee per day, you have nephrotic-range proteinuria. Nephrotic syndrome is a relatively rare condition that causes your kidneys to release an excessive amount of protein in your pee.

    How Vets Diagnose Proteinuria In Cats

    Urine Colour Chart

    Vets usually first diagnose proteinuria through urinalysis. This test is conducted on a simple urine sample. During the exam, your vet will collect a urine sample with a dipstick and evaluate sediment.

    Urinalysis measures the amount of protein in the urine while also assessing for blood and any causes of inflammation, such as crystals, bacteria, and casts .

    If more testing is needed, the standard method to obtain urine is called a cystocentesis. For this common procedure, your veterinarian inserts a needle directly into your cats bladder to obtain a urine sample. The process is often guided by ultrasound and produces the most sterile sample. This sample is then sent to the lab for a general urine profile or urinalysis.

    If urinalysis reveals blood or inflammation, your veterinarian will likely recommend further testing, including:

    • Urine culture to look for infection

    • Abdominal x-rays to look for bladder/urethral stones

    • X-rays or ultrasound to look for reproductive or prostate disease

    After your cat receives appropriate treatment, your vet will repeat the urine testing to monitor for persistent proteinuria.

    If elevated protein appears in the urine sample without signs of inflammation or bleeding, then your vet will conduct further diagnostic testing to investigate kidney disease and other systemic causes.

    If the cause remains unknown, your veterinarian may discuss more thorough tests, such as abdominal ultrasound, infectious disease testing, or viral testing.

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    What Is Proteinuria In Cats

    Proteinuria occurs when there is too much protein in your cats urine. While some protein in feline urine is normal, high levels that dont drop normally can be a sign of an underlying health issue.

    Like other mammals, a cats urine is first formed in the kidneys, where blood is filtered through a special filtration system. This filtration removes toxins and other byproducts of metabolism, including proteins. A structure in the kidneys called the glomerulus is part of this filtration system. One of its jobs is to prevent larger proteins, like albumin, from exiting the body in the urine.

    Proteinuria may be a sign that the kidneys are not functioning normally and allowing larger proteins to mix into the urine. Excessive protein in a cats urineeven on routine urine testingwarrants further investigation to identify whats causing it. The earlier the cause of proteinuria is determined and treated, the more likely a positive outcome.

    What Happens If You Have Proteinuria

    Protein gets into your pee if your kidneys arent working correctly.

    Glomeruli are groups of tiny blood vessels in your kidneys. They perform the first stage of filtering waste products and excess water from your blood. The waste products and excess water leave your body through your pee. Glomeruli dont allow passage of larger proteins or blood cells into your pee. If smaller proteins sneak through your glomeruli, then long, thin tubes in your kidneys recover the proteins and keep them in your body.

    Proteins may flow into your pee if theres:

    • Damage to your glomeruli or tubules.
    • A problem with the reabsorption process of the proteins.

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    What Are The Causes Of Pediatric Proteinuria

    One of the functions of protein in the blood is to help balance the bodys fluid levels. When protein spills into the urine, it causes fluid to leak into the bodys tissues, which results in swelling.

    Although proteinuria is often harmless and may result from stress, fever or exercise, it also can be a sign of a serious underlying kidney disease or a disease that started in another part of your childs body. Proteinuria also may be a sign of another condition, nephrotic syndrome, which may indicate an underlying kidney disease.The most common risk factors for proteinuria are diabetes and hypertension, or high blood pressure. Both of these diseases can cause kidney damage and proteinuria.

    Risk factors include:

    • Family history of kidney disease
    • Kidney damage or disease

    How To Prepare For The Test

    Is the protein in my urine due to kidney disease? [Viewer Question]

    Different medicines can change the result of this test. Before the test, tell your provider which medicines you are taking. DO NOT stop taking any medicine before talking to your provider.

    The following may also interfere with test results:

    • Dye if you have a radiology scan within 3 days before the urine test
    • Strenuous exercise

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    Causes Of Proteinuria In Cats

    Inflammation or bleeding in the lower urinary tract is most often due to:

    • Urinary tract stones

    • Crystals in the urine

    Other less-frequent causes of protein in urine include:

    • Urinary tract polyps

    • Acute pancreatitis

    Diagnosis and treatment of these underlying conditions usually resolves the proteinuria.

    If the protein in your cats urine is not associated with inflammation or bleeding, then kidney disease or other systemic diseases may be the cause. Your vet will perform additional diagnostic tests to identify kidney disease.

    Other chronic and concerning causes of proteinuria include:

    • Any systemic immune-mediated or inflammatory condition

    • Chronic renal disease/renal failure.

    Chronic causes of proteinuria require long-term or even lifelong treatment to lessen the protein in the urine.

    Preventing Protein In Urine In Pregnancy

    Most cases of protein in urine during pregnancy cant be prevented. Conditions such as preeclampsia are often inherited disorders. Underlying conditions that may cause protein in urine to increase, such as diabetes, lupus, and hypertension, may also be genetic or have complex medical and autoimmune causes.

    There is some evidence that you can lower your risk of developing preeclampsia by controlling your blood sugar and blood pressure, exercising regularly, decreasing salt and caffeine intake, and making sure to get enough sleep.

    There are some indications that taking a baby aspirin daily can decrease your risk of developing preeclampsia by 15%. You should talk to your healthcare provider before taking baby aspirin.

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    Why Is Finding Protein In My Pets Urine A Cause For Concern

    Protein is a precious resource for the body, and the kidneys have an important role to prevent it from being lost in the urine. The presence of protein in urine is called proteinuria, and it may indicate that the kidneys are not working properly. In some situations, it may even be a sign of kidney failure.

    How Will I Know If I Have Diabetes

    1000+ images about Nursing (Urine/Cultures/UTI

    If your doctor suspects you may have diabetes, they will do a blood test called hemoglobin A1C to check your blood sugar levels. This test tells your doctor how your blood sugar levels have been over the last two or three months. You have diabetes if you have a result of 6.5% or higher on two A1C tests.

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    Are There Tests To Diagnose The Cause Of Proteinuria

    Proteinuria itself can be diagnosed with a simple dipstick test. This involves dipping a specially treated paper strip into a sample of urine. Results are returned within one to two minutes.

    To measure the exact amount of protein excreted in the urine, your healthcare provider may recommend a 24-hour urine collection test. By evaluating the composition of urine collected over 24 hours , the lab can calculate how much protein is passed each day.

    Is There Anything Else I Need To Know About A Protein In Urine Test

    At-home test kits that check for protein in urine test are available without a prescription. The kits usually include dipsticks and instructions for how to collect and test your urine sample. At-home urine tests are easy to do and provide accurate results as long as you carefully follow all instructions. Ask your provider which protein in urine test is best for you.

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