I was told by my nurse that I am spilling some protein. What can I do to get the protein out of my urine?
Albumin is a protein that circulates in the blood. When the kidneys are working normally, it is not found in the urine. The term “spilling protein in the urine” refers to a condition called “microalbuminuria.” Years ago, the standard way to test for microalbuminuria was to have the patient collect all of their urine for 24 hours and measure the albumin in it. Now, we can accomplish the same result with a single sample to measure the ratio of albumin to creatinine in the specimen. Microalbuminuria can be the earliest sign of diabetic nephropathy(kidney disease). It can also indicate increased cardiovascular risk. However, many things other than diabetes can cause transient microalbuminuria. These include fever, infection, congestive heart failure, marked hyperglycemia or hypertension, hematuria (blood in the urine), and recent vigorous exercise. For this reason, the diagnosis of microalbuminuria requires two abnormal tests done weeks apart. If someone has microalbuminuria, medicines such as ACE-inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers (ARB’s) can help prevent any kidney damage from worsening. It is also very important to keep blood pressure and blood glucose under good control.
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