A urinalysis is a laboratory test for urine. It manages and detects disorders, including urinary tract infections, kidney disease, and diabetes. Additionally, it also involves inspecting the appearance, absorption, and content of urine.


A urinalysis is done for the following reasons:

To examine the overall health for:

  • Pre-surgery preparation
  • Pregnancy checkup
  • Hospital admission for the screening of a variety of disorders like diabetes, kidney diseases, and liver diseases

To diagnose medical conditions such as:

  • Abdominal pain
  • Back pain
  • Painful or frequent urination
  • Blood in the urine
  • Other urinary problems. 

To monitor medical conditions such as:

  • Kidney disease 
  • Urinary tract disease


You are allowed to eat or drink before the test. Additionally, you must specify the nonprescription medications, vitamins, and other supplements you are taking as these drugs might affect the result.

What To Expect

The doctor will provide a small cup for the urine sample. 

It involves the following steps:

  • Clean the urinary opening
  • Urinate into the toilet.
  • Collect the sample in a cup.
  • Avoid touching the inside of the cup to prevent getting the bacteria.
  • Wash your hands when done.

To get precise results, use a clean-catch method to avoid catching the bacteria from the sample. However, in some cases, the doctor will insert a thin and flexible tube called a catheter to collect the urine sample.

Afterward, the urine sample is sent to a lab for examination.

Methods Of Urinalysis

The urine sample is evaluated in three ways:

Visual exam: It involves examining the urine’s appearance.

Dipstick test: It is used to detect abnormalities in the urine. It examines the following:

  • Acidity (pH)
  • Concentration
  • Protein
  • Sugar
  • Ketones
  • Bilirubin
  • Evidence of infection
  • Blood

Microscopic exam: This examines the following:

  • White blood cells (leukocytes) and red blood cells (erythrocytes), which can contain signs of kidney disease, blood disorders, or bladder cancer;
  • Bacteria or yeasts that may indicate an infection;
  • Casts, which are outcomes of kidney disorders; and
  • Crystals, which are signs of kidney stones.


If your results appear normal, the doctor will not require further follow-ups. On the other hand, if your urinalysis results are abnormal, the doctor will require additional tests to locate the cause. Tests may include:

  • blood tests
  • imaging tests 
  • comprehensive metabolic panel
  • urine culture
  • complete blood count
  • liver or renal panel

If you encounter severe urine problems, it is best for you to seek medical help.

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