Proteinuria is the presence of protein in urine. The most common protein is called Albumin and the disorder is sometimes called Albuminuria. Protein should not usually be in urine and proteinuria can indicate a possible urine filtering problem along the with the urinary tract, especially the kidneys. Proteinuria in small amounts is regarded as being an ok condition. Doctors watch for the levels of protein to become excessive because then it becomes a concern that something is definitely not functioning correctly and requires further diagnosis.
Healthy kidneys allow the blood to pass through them, but damaged kidneys allow the proteins to pass through them as well. Proteinuria can be a condition that is due to chronic kidney disease (CKD) or complete kidney failure.
A common reason for protein in urine is something called a Nephrotic syndrome which occurs when there is a heavy leakage of protein, and there is a smaller protein concentration in the blood. Common accompanying symptoms of Nephrotic syndrome are ankle swelling and fluid retention.
A urine dipstick test can detect albumin, which is one of the most important protein components in the blood. While the dipstick test provides an accurate measure of whether there is protein in urine or not, it is not accurate in determining the protein concentration level. People are typically recommended to collect all the urine passed over 24 hours. There are many urine tests that a doctor may want to perform. Tests like PCR or ACR (protein creatinine ratio or albumin creatinine ratio) compare the amount of protein to the amount of creatinine in a single sample of urine and are also effective. Ketone Urine Tests are also appropriate.