Pus cells in urine

The occurrence of pus cells in urine is generally a sign of infection present in some part of the body, or a symptom of an underlying disease. In medical terms, the elimination of pus cells in urine is called pyuria. It is classified into two kinds, i.e., microscopic pyuria and gross pyuria. Urine with pus cells typically has a cloudy appearance.

Pus cells in urine can also be an indication of WBCs in urine. It is especially true if it occurs along with bacteria in urine. Pus cells in urine can also be a symptom of kidney or bladder inflammation. Urine passes through the kidneys and bladder before being eliminated from the body. Hence, it is possible for the pus cells produced via inflammation of these organs to mix into urine.

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Pus cells in urine are detected via urine tests. Urinalysis is one of the most popular and least expensive urine tests. In addition to detecting pus cells in urine, a urinalysis can also detect the occurrence of crystals, glucose, blood, toxins, and other waste matter occurring in urine.

The detection of pus cells in urine by itself cannot help in diagnosis of an underlying disease. Doctors will ask for many other tests, including a complete blood test, culture testing of urine, and urine sensitivity test, etc., before determining and confirming the disease that is causing pus cells in urine.


The presence of pus cells in urine is not visible to the naked eye. It is only detected via a urine test. Patients may however suffer from the below listed additional signs and symptoms that accompany a case of pus cells in urine:

  • Fever
  • Vomiting
  • Cloudy urine
  • Abdominal cramping and pain
  • Burning sensations when passing urine
  • Painful urination

The above listed symptoms are quite common and may occur for a variety of different reasons, some of which can be severe. It is therefore essential for patients to consult a doctor for prompt evaluation and effective treatment.

Causes of pus cells in urine

Some of the common causes of pus cells in urine are listed below:

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  • UTI or Urinary Tract Infection: It is one of the most common causes of pus cells in urine. The urinary system consists of the kidneys, bladder, ureters, and urethra. Any of these glands can suffer from bacterial infections; the infection may transfer to the urinary system via direct exposure of the urethra to the pathogens or through the bloodstream. Cystitis or bacterial infection of the bladder is the most prevalent cause of pus cells in urine.
    • The urinary system may also suffer from infections by other pathogens, including STDs or sexually transmitted diseases. If urinalysis or a urine culture test does not show proliferation of bacteria in the urinary tract, then doctors will order for a new set of diagnostic tests to check for the presence of other germs, which may be causing UTI and pus cells in urine.
    • Cancer: Cancers of the kidneys and/or bladder is characterized by blood and pus cells in urine. These malignancies typically affect individuals over 40 years old.
    • Interstitial cystitis:This non-infectious illness is characterized by bladder inflammation. Women are more susceptible to this disease than men. Additional tests are required to diagnose the condition as normal tests cannot detect it.
    • Kidney disorders:Lupus nephritis, papillary necrosis, polycystic kidneys, and other types of kidney diseases can lead to kidney dysfunction, which can then result in pus cells in urine as well as proteinuria and bloody urine.
      • Kidney stones is a severe medical condition that can not only affect kidney functioning and cause blood and pus cells in urine, but can also be severely painful and debilitating.
      • Infections of organs near the urinary system: If the organs occurring next to the urinary tract are affected by varied diseases, then it can sometimes be a cause of pus cells in urine.
      • Prostate inflammation:Pus cells in urine is one of the symptoms of swelling or enlargement of the prostate gland.
      • TB: Tuberculosis of the urinary system may also cause pus cells in urine. Normal urine tests may not diagnose the occurrence of TB bacteria in urine and hence additional tests are ordered by a doctor.
      • Other causes: Surgical treatment of urinary system problems, intake of certain drugs, vigorous workouts, dehydration, and elevated stress can sometimes be the cause of pus cells in urine.

Treatment of pus cells in urine

Treatment of pus cells in urine is aimed at finding out the underlying causative condition, alleviating and managing the associated symptoms, treating the pre-existing disorder, and preventing any additional health complications.

  • Infection of the urinary tract by bacteria is treated with antibiotics. Accompanying symptoms of pain and discomfort can be eased with pain killer medications.
  • Treatment of kidney stones involves drug therapy and surgery.
  • Cancer is treated with radiation therapy, chemotherapy, and surgery.

Drinking lots of water, eating a balanced and healthy diet, regular exercising, and yoga, meditation, and other relaxation techniques can boost the immune system and help prevent instances of pus cells in urine.

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