Blood in urine, also known as hematuria, may be an indication of a serious underlying illness. Knowing the causes of blood in urine will let you know when it is time to see the doctor. Here are more facts about hematuria.
Blood In Urine
Hematuria is essentially blood in the urine. This could either be visible to the naked eye (gross hematuria) or can only be seen through a microscope (microscopic hematuria). The first is easier to catch since it can be clearly seen. The second one can be tricky since a urine sample has to undergo a laboratory test before any trace of blood can be detected. There are many causes of blood in the urine. Knowing the reason for the bleeding will help the doctor decide the best medication to address the patient’s problem.
Causes Of Blood In Urine
As mentioned earlier, there are many causes of blood in urine. Here are just some of them:
Certain forms of medication can cause hematuria. Usual medication that can induce bleeding is aspirin, anticoagulant, penicillin, and some anti-cancer drugs. This is the reason why a patient should be forthright with all medicines he or she is taking upon initial consultation. Usually, the doctor would put an immediate stop in the intake of the drug that causes hematuria. He or She might prescribe medicine that has the same effect but significantly lessens the possibility of bleeding.
Injuries to somebody organs can also induce blood in urine. The kidney is the most susceptible. If you bang up the kidneys too much, gross hematuria is highly possible.
One of the major causes of blood in urine is any type of infection. The most usual types are urinary tract infections (UTI) and kidney infections (pyelonephritis). In both cases, bacteria enter the body via the urethra or the ureters exactly. These bacteria multiply exponentially until the body is overwhelmed and infection sets in. The two kinds of infections have varying symptoms. For UTI, usual symptoms are pain or burning sensation while urinating; constant need to urinate; and heavily-concentrated urine with a distinct smell. For pyelonephritis, usual signs are pain in the upper abdomen and fever.
Whether they are found in the bladder or kidney, stones can cause both microscopic and gross hematuria.
Hematuria is the usual symptom of both kidney diseases and cancer.
There are some who inherit certain disorders that cause hematuria. Among them are kidney diseases and sickle cell anemia.
An enlarged prostate (benign prostatic hyperplasia) is also considered one of the causes of blood in urine. Symptoms include urination difficulty, increased desire to urinate, and hematuria (both visible and microscopic).
Any strenuous exercise can also induce blood in urine. These are usually attributed to lack of hydration, injury to the kidneys or bladder, or red blood cells’ breakdown.
There are many things you can look into that will point out to a possible case of hematuria. Here are some of the signs and symptoms of blood in urine:
- Visible blood in the urine
- Urine turns red, pink, or dark brown close to black
- Fever (due to the infection)
There are some people who have a higher risk of developing hematuria. Here are some of the risk factors:
Hematuria can be passed on through the genes. If a person has a family member or family history of hematuria, there is a big chance that the person will experience it too.
Those who have just recovered from infections can also be afflicted with hematuria. This is due to glomerulonephritis or the enlargement of the kidneys.
The older a person gets, the bigger the chance to develop hematuria.
There is some medications that can cause bleeding. Consult your physician regarding the safety of the medicine prescribed to you.
Heavy exercise. People who do strenuous activities are at risk of suffering from hematuria.
There are different tests that the doctor will prescribe to find out the causes of blood in urine. This will be the basis for treatment. Possible tests include initial consultation which will cover the patient’s medical history; urinalysis; MRI scan; and ultrasound imaging. The doctor might also resort to cystoscopy to check if there are injuries in the urethra or the bladder.
There are different ways to treat the causes of blood in urine. Here are just some of them:
- Prescription medication. This is the usual treatment for bladder or kidney stones.
- Antibiotics. If infections are the determined causes of blood in urine, then this is the mode of treatment the doctor will prescribe.
Some hematuria cases are very mild that symptoms gradually disappear over time. Either way, a patient should submit to proper diagnosis with the doctor to rule out any serious underlying illness that might be the main cause of blood in the urine.
When To See A Doctor
Hematuria should not be taken lightly. Once you experience gross hematuria, see the doctor immediately. Only the physician can diagnose the causes of blood in urine and the appropriate treatment to counter it.
The problem is if the blood is microscopic in nature. This is the reason why a regular physical exam is needed. Microscopic hematuria can be caught via regular urinalysis. Once that is diagnosed, the doctor can then plan out the best medical intervention given the facts of the case.
While it can be shocking to see blood in urine, one should not panic if he or she notices it. The best thing to do is to get a sample which you will then submit for urinalysis. Once the doctor has the lab results, he or she can give you a better picture of your condition and how to fix it. Finding the right causes of blood in urine is the first step towards healing.