High Protein in Urine

Protein in urine is technically referred to as Proteinuria or also as microalbuminuria. This is a condition wherein the amount of protein in urine increases to an abnormal level. Urinalysis is a test which is conducted to determine the content of urine of a patient. This same test is also helpful in detecting the amount of protein in urine. Kidney serves as a filter for the body which segregates the waste product from the recyclable product in the body. Kidney filters blood waste and retains the necessary components such as protein. Some anomalies may allow the protein to go through the filters and reach the urine causing proteinuria.

Low level of protein content in urine is considered to be normal. Even increased content of protein in urine is also not unusual, especially in younger individuals, often recorded after exercises or during sickness. If high amount of protein is detected during microalbumin test, it may indicate early stage of kidney damages due to diabetes.

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Types of Proteinuria

There are three recognized categories of proteinuria which are transient or intermittent, persistent or always present and orthostatic or posture related (sitting, standing, lying down). These three types of proteinuria are explained below.

  • Transient proteinuria:

This intermittent type of protein in urine is considered to be the most common form of proteinuria. This condition often ebbs away on its own without any medical intervention. Transient proteinuria is often caused due to stress experienced due to exercising and illnesses such as fever.

  • Orthostatic proteinuria

Since this condition is related to posture the protein gets released into urine due to a certain body position such as lying down, standing or sitting etc. This condition is recorded in around 2 to 5 percent of entire adolescent population. However, it is also less often detected in people over 30 years. Actual causes of orthostatic proteinuria are unknown. This condition is often not harmful and treatment can be overlooked. The condition often disappears with age. Diagnosis for this condition would be done based on split urine testing.

  • Persistent proteinuria

This type of proteinuria is on contrary to the aforementioned types. Persistent proteinuria as the name indicates remains persistently for long time. This condition is an outcome of underlying kidney anomalies or other medical difficulties such as heart issues, blood vessel problems, diseases that produce anomalous level of protein, kidney disorder, etc.

Symptoms of Protein in urine

Protein in urine can be chronic in nature and may rarely show symptoms initially. The only way to diagnose this condition is by doing a urine test. This is the reason diabetic and hypertension affected people are suggested to test urine at least once in a year to ensure that proteinuria is not developed. Some late symptoms of proteinuria include:

  • Foamy urine
  • Swollen hands, feet, stomach or face
  • Ache near lower rib region at the position of kidney
  • Pain in the back slight around or at the kidney region
  • Experience burning sensation and also pain during urination
  • Occurrence of blood in urine
  • Fatigue or tiredness
  • Nauseous or vomiting and general illness
  • Reduces appetite
  • Respiratory issues such as shortness of breath
  • Affected concentration

Proteinuria is more common in men as compared to women. This is simply because diabetes is highly recorded in men than in women. In children high amount of protein secreted through urine is not so common. There are also few reports of proteinuria affecting pregnant women; this is scientifically termed as preeclampsia.  This may happen due to hypertension in pregnant women which causes high protein amount in blood. Preeclampsia is considered to be extremely dangerous as it does not have any treatment option. The only option would be delivery or abortion.

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Diagnosis of Protein in Urine 

Urine testing

Protein in urine is commonly diagnosed through urine test such as urinalysis usually done through dipstick method. Dipstick technique does not provide a precise insight of the anomaly. People are often suggested to have urines test regularly after timely intervals. It will help you track the condition and if proteinuria is temporary then you will find yourself clear of the condition after few tests. Usually if two or more analysis of the urine indicates presence of protein then the focus is shifted to diagnosing the amount of protein present in urine. If you are asked to collect urine at home then ensure you preserve the specimen in cool place such as refrigerator.

Blood test

Blood tests are also suggested for protein in urine diagnosis, in order to determine the functioning of kidney. This test is often referred to as Kidney function test. The test involves BUN measurement of Blood Urea Nitrogen measurement as well as creatinine. A formula is used to calculate the functioning of kidney using glomerular filtration rate.

Kidney biopsy

Kidney biopsy test is also an applicable test if proteinuria is detected in a patient. The doctor obtains a sample from one of the kidneys and evaluates it under microscope. This test is suggested for very less people with proteinuria.

Natural treatment for Proteinuria

There are many natural remedies that can help in dealing with the condition. In fact even modern medicines are not highly effective in treating the condition especially if kidney is damaged. The only way to deal with it is dialysis. Some ways to manage the condition and prevent it naturally include:

  • Eat too much fruits and vegetables
  • Include legumes and grains frequently in your diet
  • Fish should be in your menu at least thrice a week
  • Avoid red meat and go for lean meat such as chicken
  • Restrict salt and excessive fats in food
  • Water should be consumed frequently and carbonated drinks should be avoided
  • Include exercises in your daily regimen; perform at least 30 minutes of daily physical activity
  • Restrict consumption of alcohol to suggested level which is less than two small drinks per day
  • Try to reduce level of stress by using stress reduction techniques, yoga, meditation and tai-chi
  • Do not allow your weight to increase above normal level
  • Onion and garlic are also good ingredients to deal with the condition, you can include these two ingredients in your daily meal
  • Drink a glass of bitter gourd juice every morning on empty stomach, you can substitute bitter gourd juice with bitter gourd seed powder; add this powder to regular meal or mix in water and drink.

Though these are some effective natural techniques to prevent and manage high protein in urine you should consult your doctor as the prior step. Consulting a doctor will help you determine the underlying cause of the condition and appropriate treatment can be suggested. You may not understand when you have high protein in urine but if you experience any of the symptoms then you should seek medical advice.

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