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How To Read Urinalysis Results for UTI

How To Read Urinalysis Results for UTI

When peeing, pain, an odd color, a foul odor not present before, and even an increase in frequency not attributed to drinking more fluids are some signs that it’s time to seek medical attention. This will more often than not, lead to a urinalysis, or urine test, that will determine the underlying cause for the changes. How to read urinalysis results for UTI? Find out here.

What is a urinalysis?

Urine content says a lot about how your body is doing and if there’s something going on inside that has to be checked by a medical professional. This has made the procedure a staple in diagnosing various conditions.

A urinalysis takes urine and puts it through certain testing methods to determine any abnormal parameters in the sample.

The tested sample will be evaluated by a medical professional who knows how to read urinalysis results for UTI, a common infection, as well as more uncommon infections and other ailments.

Should I have a urinalysis done?

As part of a daily routine, any sudden or gradual changes to your peeing will be more often than not, noticeable.

If you experience symptoms such as a change in urine color and/or odor, the presence of blood in the urine, pain while urinating, an increase in the frequency of urination, or pain in the abdomen or back, then see a medical professional.

More often than not, your doctor will have a urinalysis performed.

What does a urinalysis test for?

Conditions and substances that change certain, quantifiable aspects of urine can be determined from a urinalysis. These include:

  • UTI
  • Diabetes and other metabolic disorders
  • Kidney stones or kidney disease
  • Pregnancy
  • Bladder cancer
  • Sexually transmitted infections (STIs)
  • Recreational drug use

How is a urinalysis carried out?

A sample of urine must first be obtained and can be done so via the “clean-catch” method of peeing into a sterilized specimen container.

When collecting a sample, you must ensure that you wash your hands before and after collection to avoid contamination and germ spread.

Then, when ready to urinate, do not collect the urine immediately; take your sample mid-stream by peeing then stopping to place the container, before adding in your sample. This prevents bacteria on the surface of your genitals from contaminating the specimen.

A variation of the usual sample collection method will have the patient collecting urine throughout a day rather than once, in order to better study kidney health.

Healthcare professionals will analyze the sample based on these parameters:

  • Color or appearance
  • Odor and/or acidity
  • Abnormal presences of blood, cells, crystals, protein, glucose or sugar, and microbes

What do my results mean?

By comparing your results to the normal ranges and conditions of urine, and clarifying things with your doctor, you’ll know how to read urinalysis results for UTI, diabetes, kidney stones, and other illnesses that will need treatment.

Some findings you may come across are as follows:

  • If there is blood in the urine, it may indicate that something is wrong with your kidneys, urinary system, or bladder. It may also mean you have an infection. Before having a urinalysis, it is important to note that period blood may also be present in your urine
  • If sugar is found, that may point to diabetes
  • If there’s protein in your urine then you may have kidney disease or damage
  • Calcium in your urine could mean kidney stones
  • The presence of cells in your urine, particularly ones shed from the bladder, may indicate bladder cancer
  • Dark-colored urine may indicate severe dehydration or liver damage
  • Cloudy and smelly urine may mean UTI
  • An increase in frequency may also be a sign of UTI

Knowing how to read urinalysis results for UTI, a common occurrence, to rarer ones like bladder cancer or liver damage, will help you properly address the underlying cause behind the changes to your urination.

This will also allow the discussion of steps to take and treatment with your doctor, flow smoothly for convenience, and reduced anxiety about how to proceed after interpreting your results. Always consult your doctor regarding the results.

Learn more about Medical Tests here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Urine: What Your Pee Says About Your Health, https://www.emedicinehealth.com/pee_urine_health_color_odor_urinalysis/article_em.htm, Accessed July 28, 2021

Urinalysis, https://my.clevelandclinic.org/health/diagnostics/17893-urinalysis, Accessed July 28, 2021

How is a urine test carried out and what can it reveal? https://www.netdoctor.co.uk/procedures/examinations/a3028/urine-test/, Accessed July 28, 2021

Urinalysis, https://www.emedicinehealth.com/pee_urine_health_color_odor_urinalysis/article_em.htm, Accessed July 28, 2021

Urine tests, https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/urine-tests, Accessed July 28, 2021

Urinary tract infection (UTI): symptoms, causes and treatment, https://www.netdoctor.co.uk/conditions/liver-kidney-and-urinary-system/a12003/urinary-tract-infection-uti/, Accessed July 28, 2021

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Written by Honey Buenaventura Updated May 11
Medically reviewed by Regina Victoria Boyles, MD