Urology Group of Western New EnglandUrology Group of Western New EnglandUGWNE - 413-785-5321 - 3640 Main Street - Springfield, MA
conditions-we-treat-page-photo-banner

 

Return to Conditions We Treat

Hematuria

What is hematuria?
Blood in the urine is called hematuria. It can be a sign of a more serious disease in a person’s urinary tract. There are two types; gross hematuria, which is urine that has visible blood in it; or microhematuria, which is, the urine has visible blood in it only under the microscope. With gross hematuria, patients should seek medical attention as soon as possible. A full medical history and assessment from your doctor will be one of the first steps in determining the cause of the blood in your urine. Seeing a urologist for this problem and further testing would be your best course of action. A urologist is a doctor who treats diseases of the urinary tract in men, women, and children of all ages. In addition to that, a urologist also treats problems with the male reproductive system.

The urinary tract is made up of the kidneys and ureters (upper urinary tract), and the bladder and urethra (lower urinary tract). Urine is processed here and the liquid waste leaves your body through the urinary tract. Urine is typically yellow but can be different in color for many reasons. Blood makes urine look many shades of pink to dark red.

What causes hematuria?
The most common causes of hematuria in the upper tracts are:

  • Kidney disease
  • Infection
  • Kidney stones
  • Obstruction, blockage, or injury of the kidney or ureters
  • Cancer of the kidney
  • Renal vascular disease
  • Benign kidney tumor
  • Abnormal blood clotting

The most common causes of hematuria in the lower tracts are:

  • Urinary tract infection
  • Bladder cancer or stone
  • Urethral cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH)
  • Trauma or injury

Evaluation of hematuria
Pain or urinary problems such as frequency in urination, urgency or burning can accompany hematuria. Symptoms such as these may indicate a urinary infection. The urine may be looked at under a microscope so the doctor can see the cells and bacteria in the urine. This testing will show white blood cells (pus) and bacteria that may require treatment with medication, usually antibiotics. Some urinary diseases have no symptoms that can be seen or detected and sometimes blood in the urine will be the first sign of a more serious disease such as cancer of kidneys or bladder.

Your evaluation should include a complete medical history, physical exam, and microscopic urinalysis. Depending on what has been found, further evaluation may consist of a cystoscpy – a lighted scope placed into the bladder for direct internal examination, x-ray studies, a CT scan, and or intravenous pyelogram or ultrasound.

Your treatment will depend on the cause of your hematuria. If the cause is an infection, treatment of the infection will probably solve the bleeding problem. In other cases, the abnormality may be a stone that needs to be removed or another abnormality.