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What causes protein in urine?

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Posted on Tue, 17 Nov 2015
Question: i been having issues i been so I protein into my urine for over a year now i am also very like i haven't slept in days i am swollen everywhere my body hurts so bad every day i pee alot at night and my urine is all different colors i drink alot of fluids i was getting rashes and itching but was placed on an antihistamine i get XXXXXXX horses at the time my potassium was checked and was fine now its low i have an appointment with a nephrologist on the third of November i was told it could possibly have kidney disease and could be advanced since it doesn't show symptoms until it's well into the disease i drink alot of fluids i used to take lithium and i found out about my spilling protein into my urine when i was pregnant but i didn't have preeclampsia then i went to my regular dr because i have been feeling unwell and he took an urine sample and it showed there was protein i also had scarlet fever in late August please any information would be great
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Answered by Dr. Panagiotis Zografakis (1 hour later)
Brief Answer:
investigation required

Detailed Answer:
Hello,

protein in the urine is a serious finding. Normally there is no protein in the urine. Sometimes some protein can be detected for various reasons, without kidney disease. The protein quantity is very important to know. Various diseases or syndromes may cause protein leakage. In order to find out what caused it a careful review of your medical history, drugs, symptoms and tests is required.

Some important tests to consider include the following:
- 24 hour urine collection for protein.
- antinuclear antibodies (ANA), anti-glomerular basement membrane antibodies (anti-GBM)
- serum protein and albumin
- serum protein electrophoresis
- complete blood count
- erythrocyte sedimentation rate
- urine, creatinine
- urinalysis (including microscopic analysis for sediment)
- electrolytes
- kidney ultrasound scan

These are some very basic tests. Depending on the findings, other tests might be considered.

Let me add a few words about some fairly common benign conditions with protein in the urinalysis.
- too dense urine (specific gravity close to 1030) may cause detection of protein.
- urinary tract infection
- orthostatic proteinuria, which means that protein is excreted in the urine when the patient is physically active but not during rest.

Depending on the final diagnosis, the prognosis may be great or pretty bad. Being swollen probably means that your albumin levels in the serum are low, which probably means that you're loosing too much protein in the urine or it could mean a faulty kidney function and fluid retention.

I hope you find my comments helpful!
You can contact me again if yo'd like any clarification or further information.

Kind Regards!
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Follow up: Dr. Panagiotis Zografakis (11 minutes later)
im also exhausted all the time im on lasix and some times they don't work i hardly urinate except at night and my urine is usually really dark except when i take the lasix and im still really swollen also my legs and lower back hurt so bad like i ran for miles sore
doctor
Answered by Dr. Panagiotis Zografakis (6 minutes later)
Brief Answer:
you'd better check this as soon as possible

Detailed Answer:
I don't know if you've already checked that, but dark urine and decreased quantity of urine may be caused by muscular damage (rhabdomyolysis). When too much myoglobin enters the urine, the urine turn red (like if there's blood) and the kidneys are in danger. The serum CPK levels may be very high. In cases like this, it's common for the patient to experience back pain. Lasix won't help much if low albumin caused the swelling.

Rhabdomyolysis is treated by increased urinary flow. In the most serious cases, intravenous fluids are administered. The serum potassium may be abnormal.

Kind Regards!
Above answer was peer-reviewed by : Dr. Chakravarthy Mazumdar
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Answered by
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Dr. Panagiotis Zografakis

Internal Medicine Specialist

Practicing since :1999

Answered : 3801 Questions

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What causes protein in urine?

Brief Answer: investigation required Detailed Answer: Hello, protein in the urine is a serious finding. Normally there is no protein in the urine. Sometimes some protein can be detected for various reasons, without kidney disease. The protein quantity is very important to know. Various diseases or syndromes may cause protein leakage. In order to find out what caused it a careful review of your medical history, drugs, symptoms and tests is required. Some important tests to consider include the following: - 24 hour urine collection for protein. - antinuclear antibodies (ANA), anti-glomerular basement membrane antibodies (anti-GBM) - serum protein and albumin - serum protein electrophoresis - complete blood count - erythrocyte sedimentation rate - urine, creatinine - urinalysis (including microscopic analysis for sediment) - electrolytes - kidney ultrasound scan These are some very basic tests. Depending on the findings, other tests might be considered. Let me add a few words about some fairly common benign conditions with protein in the urinalysis. - too dense urine (specific gravity close to 1030) may cause detection of protein. - urinary tract infection - orthostatic proteinuria, which means that protein is excreted in the urine when the patient is physically active but not during rest. Depending on the final diagnosis, the prognosis may be great or pretty bad. Being swollen probably means that your albumin levels in the serum are low, which probably means that you're loosing too much protein in the urine or it could mean a faulty kidney function and fluid retention. I hope you find my comments helpful! You can contact me again if yo'd like any clarification or further information. Kind Regards!