Urinalysis

Urinalysis – Is performed when renal disease or urinary tract infection is suspected.  Multiple tests are used to assess the functional capacity of the kidneys and to reveal the presence of abnormal cells, pigments, crystals, or bacteria in the urine.  Urine samples may be collected during urination or by catheterizing the bladder.  There are advantages and disadvantages to both approaches, depending upon the type of tests to be performed.  Basic urinalysis includes an assessment of color and clarity.  Specific gravity is a test that evaluates the ability of the kidney to concentrate or dilute the urine.  Urine pH and biochemical tests are used to identify acidosis, urinary tract inflammation, increased glucose, hemolysis or muscle cell degeneration.  Examination of the urine sediment may reveal blood cells, epithelial cells, and bacteria.  The urine may be cultured to further evaluate for infection.