BLOOD IN THE URINE
If you have blood in your urine (hematuria), it may be caused by a variety of problems in your kidneys and urinary tract. Hematuria can either be visible or microscopic. It occurs when blood cells leak into your urine from your kidneys or other parts of your urinary tract. Problems that cause blood in your urine range from mild to severe.
What Causes Blood in Our Urine?
Visible blood in your urine may be a sign of advanced kidney, bladder, or prostate cancer. You will not have this symptom in the early stages when it is more treatable. If you are a man, your prostate gland is located right below your bladder and surrounds the top part of your urethra. It grows as you approach middle age, and if it enlarges too much, it compresses the urethra and partially blocks your urine flow. You will have difficulty urinating, persistent need, and blood in your urine. A prostate infection (prostatitis) causes the same signs and symptoms. Sickle cell anemia, a hereditary defect of the hemoglobin in your red blood cells, and Alport syndrome, which affects the filtering membranes in your kidneys can both cause hematuria. Glomerulonephritis, an inflammation of your kidneys’ filtering system, may be part of a systemic disease like diabetes or occurs on its own. It is also triggered by viral or strep infections, immune problems, or blood vessel diseases like vasculitis.
Blows or injuries to your kidneys caused by accidents or contacts sports can cause visible blood in your urine. When bacteria moves from your bloodstream or ureters and into one or both of your kidneys. The symptoms of a kidney infection are similar to a bladder infection, but fever and flank pain are the distinguishing signs of kidney infection. Some drugs can cause urinary bleeding. The anti-cancer drug known as cyclophosphamide and the commonly used drug penicillin can both cause urinary bleeding. Sometimes visible blood in your urine is caused by an anticoagulant medication like aspirin or heparin. These medications can cause your blood to thin, blood in your urine, and can even cause your bladder to bleed. Minerals concentrated in your urine sometimes precipitate outward and form crystals on the walls of your kidney or bladder. These crystals accumulate more minerals and turn into small hardened stones over time. They are painless until they cause a blockage or are being passed. The excruciating pain of a passing a bladder or kidney stone has been compared to childbearing pain. These stones can cause internal bleeding that varies in severity.
This happens rarely, and it isn’t quite clear why intense exercise can lead to gross hematuria. It may be because of trauma to the bladder, dehydration, or the breakdown of red blood cells that can happen during sustained aerobic workouts. Runners are most often affected by this condition although any athlete can develop visible blood in urine after an intense workout. When bacteria enter your body through your urethra and multiply in your bladder. You will feel a persistent urge to urinate, burning sensations while urinating, and strong smelling urine.
Whatever the cause of blood in your urine, because the possible causes have such a wide range of severity, you should see a doctor right away. It could be caused by something benign, but in some cases, it can be caused by illnesses that cause death.
Your Risk Factors
Almost anyone can have red blood cells in their urine, including children and teens. Many men who are older than 50 years old have occasional hematuria because their prostate gland is enlarged. Regular or moderate use of aspirin, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory pain relievers, and antibiotics like penicillin are known to increase your risk of urinary bleeding. You are more prone to urinary bleeding if you have a history in your family of kidney diseases and stones. More than 50% of women experience a urinary tract infection at least once in their lives, some of which have urinary bleeding. Younger men are more likely to have kidney stones or Alport syndrome. Kidney inflammation after a viral or bacterial infection is one of the leading causes of visible blood in urine for children. Long-distance runners are the most prone to blood in urine induced by exercise. This condition is sometimes referred to as jogger’s hematuria, but anyone who goes through regular strenuous workouts can develop these symptoms.
Hematuria has no official treatment; instead, your doctor will treat the underlying cause of your hematuria. If your underlying condition isn’t serious, no treatment is necessary.
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