Urine Test (Urinalysis)

Urine Test (Urinalysis)

Urine tests are effective ways to monitor how the body is working because urine contains remains of hundreds of minerals, fluids, bacteria, and other substances from the blood that are processed by the kidneys and excreted. A urine test (Urinalysis) can be done by collecting a urine sample that is tested in a lab.

A urine test (Urinalysis) can

  • Diagnose urinary tract disease symptoms
  • Show effectiveness of kidneys and other urinary tract organs
  • Show drugs or chemicals in the blood
  • Help you monitor the overall health of your body
  • Confirm red urine (Hematuria) is really blood
  • Monitor presence or progression of

Urine Test Types

There are more than 100 different urine tests. Urinalysis often includes the following tests.

  • Urine Color - shows fluid balance, diet, medicines, and diseases. Level of darkness tests amount of water the urine. Vitamin B supplements can turn urine bright yellow. Some medicines, blackberries, beets, rhubarb, or blood in the urine can turn urine red-brown
  • Urine Clarity - tests bacteria, blood, sperm, crystals, or mucus can make urine look cloudy
  • Urine Odor - Diseases caused by bacteria can cause a bad odor, while diabetes can cause a sweet, fruity urine odor
  • Urine Gravity or Density - tests substances in the urine and shows how well the kidneys balance water in urine
  • Urine PH - tests acidity (alkaline) of urine. Urine pH of 4 is strongly acidic, 7 is neutral, and 9 is strongly alkaline
  • Urine protein - tests protein presence in urine. Protein should not be present in urine, but hard exercise, pregnancy, and some diseases, especially kidney disease, may cause presence protein in urine. Presence of specific protein called Albumin is referred to as referred to as Albuminuria
  • Urine glucose - tests glucose levels in blood. When blood sugar level is very high, it can be a sign of diabetes, or damaged kidneys
  • Urine Nitrates and Urine Nitrites - tests for urinary tract infection (UTI) to see level of enzyme that changes urinary nitrates to nitrites, which indicate UTI
  • Leukocyte esterase (WBC esterase) - test white blood cells in the urine, indicating UTI. More about Leukocytes
  • Urine Ketones - large amounts of ketones in the urine may mean diabetic ketoacidosis
  • Microscopic urine analysis - tests urine sediment for red or white blood cells (not usually found in urine), inflammation, disease, or injury to the kidneys, ureters, bladder, or urethra.
  • Urine casts - some urine tests show casts that form in tiny tubes in the kidneys, showing kidney disease may be present
  • Urine crystals - urine test showing many crystals may indicate kidney stones or metabolism problems
  • Bacteria, yeast cells, or parasites in urine indicate infection
  • Squamous cells in urine - typically a sign that something went wrong with the test and it has to be re-done
Before the urine test, do not eat foods or medicines that can color the urine and do not exercise strenuously before the test, as that may effect urine color and cause misleading urine test (Urinalysis) results.

Other substances that may be found in a urine test:

  • Bilirubin - a substance formed by the breakdown of red blood cells, not typically found in urine. If Bilirubin is present, it may mean liver damage or that flow of bile from the gallbladder is blocked
  • Urobilinogen - a substance formed by the breakdown of bilirubin. Large amounts of Urobilinogen can be a sign of liver disease (cirrhosis, hepatitis)
  • Bence Jones protein - abnormal protein found in the urine tests in about 50% of people with a rare type of cancer called multiple myeloma

Other urine tests include

Urine Tests For Drug Use

Urine drug tests (also crudely known as piss tests), are the most common types of drug testing. It is the least expensive drug-testing method and it is commonly used to test people for drug use before hiring someone and throughout their employment. Urine tests are also used as random drug testing at workplace, schools, drug rehab centers, etc.

People can perform the tests anywhere they like: either at home with home urine test kits, doctor's office, or in drug testing laboratories. When labs test urine for drug use, they most commonly test for traces of Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive substance of Marijuana. 50 nanograms of THC metabolites per milliliter defines a "presumptive positive" by NIDA (National Institute on Drug Abuse) certified labs. People who use marijuana often use various solutions to pass urine test since you don't need absolutely clean urine but rather, simply less than 50 ng/ml of THC in your urine.

A common way to cheat a drug test is to hand in a synthetic urine rather than the person's own urine. Since synthetic urine is chemically the same as regular urine, and also looks the same, this technique has been known to help people pass their urine tests.

In the United States, many people feel that urine testing for drugs is unconstitutional since of Fourth Amendment to the United States Constitution states that "the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures."

Interesting Reads

When you fail a court-ordered urine test, you will be compelled to find drug addiction treatment centers that can help you get rid of your drug problem.


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