The presence of blood in the urine, or hematuria, can be frightful. The cause is frequently not harmful. However, blood in the urine might potentially indicate a serious illness.
Gross hematuria is the term used when the blood is visible in the urine. Microscopic hematuria is the medical term for blood that cannot be seen with the naked eye. When a lab tests the urine, the minuscule amount can only be seen under a microscope. In any case, it’s critical to identify the cause of the bleeding.
The cause will determine the appropriate course of treatment.
Blood might appear as pink, red, or coke–colored urine. Urine changes color due to red blood cells. Urine turns red with only a trace amount of blood.
Often, bleeding is not painful. However, it may be painful if blood clots are discharged in the urine.
If your urine appears to contain blood, consult a medical professional.
Red blood cells are not usually the cause of red urine. Some medications, such as the urinary tract symptom reliever phenazopyridine, can make urine color red. Beets and rhubarb are two foods that might cause urine to become red when consumed.
It might be challenging to determine whether blood is to blame for a change in urine color. It is therefore always recommended to have a checkup.
This syndrome develops when blood cells leak into urine from the urinary system or the kidneys. This leaking may occur due to a variety of issues, such as:
- Kidney infection (Pyelonephritis). When germs reach the kidneys via the circulation, infections can develop. Additionally, infections may develop when germs pass from the ureters, a pair of tubes that link the kidneys and bladder, to the kidneys. Symptoms related to urination caused by kidney infections can overlap with those of other urinary tract infections (UTIs). However, they are more likely to result in a fever and back, side, or groin pain.
- Urinary Tract Infections (UTIs). These take place when bacteria enter the urethra, the canal through which urine exits the body. The bacteria then grow more numerous in the bladder. UTIs can result in bleeding, which can cause red, pink, or brown urine to appear. You can experience a persistent, intense need to urinate in conjunction with a UTI. While urinating, there may be scorching and pain. It’s possible that your urine also smells strongly.
- Enlarged prostate. The top portion of the urethra is encircled by the prostate gland, which is located just below the bladder. In the middle years, it frequently grows larger. The urethra is then subjected to pressure, partially obstructing urine flow. You can experience difficulty urinating, an ongoing or urgent need to urinate, or blood in the urine if your prostate is swollen. The same symptoms can also be brought on by prostatitis, an infection of the prostate
- Inherited illnesses. Blood can be found in urine as a result of sickle cell anemia, a genetic disorder that affects red blood cells. Either the blood cells are visible or are too small to be seen. Blood in the urine can potentially be a symptom of Alport syndrome, a disorder that harms the kidneys’ tiny blood capillaries.
- A bladder or kidney stone. Crystals can develop on the inner walls of the kidneys or bladder due to the mineral content present in urine. The crystals may develop into tiny, hard stones with time.
The stones frequently cause little pain. However, they can be quite painful if they block anything or leave the body through the urine. Bladder or kidney stones can result in bleeding that can only be observed in a lab as well as bleeding that is visible in the urine.
- Kidney disease. A common symptom of glomerulonephritis, a kidney condition, is blood in the urine, which can only be observed in a lab. The kidney’s microscopic filters that eliminate waste from blood become inflamed by this condition.
Glomerulonephritis could be a component of a disease that affects the entire body, such diabetes. Or it might take place on its own.
- Kidney injury. Blood might appear in urine as a result of a hit or other kidney injury caused by an accident or contact sports.
- Cancer. The presence of visible blood in the urine could indicate advanced prostate, bladder, or kidney cancer. These malignancies might not show symptoms right away, which would make treatment more effective.
- Medicines. Blood in urine has been associated with the anti–cancer medication cyclophosphamide (Cytoxan) and the antibiotic penicillin. Blood in urine is related to blood clot–preventing medications as well. These include painkillers like aspirin as well as drugs that prevent platelets from adhering to one another. Blood–thinning medications like heparin may potentially be to blame.
- Hard exercise. After engaging in physical contact sports like football, blood in the urine is a possibility. It might be connected to bladder injury brought on by being hit. Long–distance sports like marathon running can also result in blood in the urine, but the cause is less understood. It could be brought on by bladder damage or by other non–injury related factors. Urine containing blood after strenuous activity may naturally disappear within a week.
Don’t assume that blood in your urine after exercise is due to activity. Seek out a medical professional.
The etiology of hematuria is frequently unknown.
Red blood cells can be found in the urine of almost anybody. Kids and teenagers are included in this. A number of factors is a potential risk factor for having blood in the urine, including:
- Age. Due to an enlarged prostate gland, men in their middle years and older may be more likely to get hematuria. After the age of 50, the chance of several malignancies that might result in blood in the urine may also increase.
- Urinary tract infection. One of the main reasons why blood appears in children’s pee is this.
- Family history. If one or more family members have experienced renal disease, the likelihood of having blood in the urine may increase.
- Certain medicines. Blood in the urine is a possibility that may be increased by some painkillers, blood thinners, and antibiotics.
- Hard exercise. One moniker for hematuria is “marathon runner’s hematuria“. The danger can also increase in contact sports.