Blood In Urine: Symptoms Causes And Treatment
One of the most stressful experiences in life is to suddenly be confronted with a new health problem we hadnt even considered before. Its especially true when its related to something we do every day for our entire lives. You move along with your life as usual, not even thinking about something as seemingly innocuous as using the bathroom. And then one day you look down in the toilet and see bloody urine.
Its perfectly natural to feel some panic set in as you stare into the toilet, wondering if that really is blood in the urine or just some trick of the light. Or maybe some other reason that could explain what you see. Most people will immediately run to the internet to frantically search: what causes blood in urine?;
The term for the presence of blood in urine is hematuria, and there are many possible reasons why you might be experiencing this ailment. For that reason, its important to understand the causes and potential related symptoms for your own peace of mind and to give you a sense of when its time to talk to your doctor.;
What Is The Prostate
The prostate is a walnut-shaped gland that is part of the male reproductive system. The main function of the prostate is to make a fluid that goes into semen. Prostate fluid is essential for a mans fertility. The gland surrounds the urethra at the neck of the bladder. The bladder neck is the area where the urethra joins the bladder. The bladder and urethra are parts of the lower urinary tract. The prostate has two or more lobes, or sections, enclosed by an outer layer of tissue, and it is in front of the rectum, just below the bladder. The urethra is the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body. In men, the urethra also carries semen out through the penis.
What Are The Symptoms And Signs
The location of the prostate gland is fairly low in the pelvic region, below the urinary bladder and in front of the rectum. It lies in very close proximity to the urethra. The urethra is the tube that conveys urine from the bladder to the external environment. When the prostate gland swells, it tends to exert pressure on the urinary bladder as well as the urethra. Initially, there may be no significant disturbance. Eventually, however, the individual will notice certain changes in patterns of urination. The following symptoms are common manifestations of enlargement of the prostate gland:
- The individual may find it difficult to initiate urination and may need to strain to force urine out.
- There may be a reduced flow of urine.
- The urine stream may pause intermittently.
- Frequent urge to urinate, particularly at night.
- The bladder is not voided completely upon urination.
- Sudden, unexpected urges to urinate.
- Urinary incontinence.
What Causes Microscopic Hematuria
Some of the most common causes of blood in the urine include:
- Kidney infections.
- Swelling in the filtering system of the kidneys. This is called glomerulonephritis.
- A stone in your;bladder;or in a kidney.
- A disease that runs in families, such as cystic;kidney;disease.
- Some medicines.
- A blood disease, like sickle;cell;anemia.
- A;tumor;in your urinary tract .
- Exercise. When this is the cause, hematuria will usually go away in 24 hours.
Are There Different Causes For Men
In some cases, blood in the urine may mean something different for men than for women.;Blood may show up from either an enlarged prostate gland;or prostate cancer.
And, both bladder and kidney cancers are more common in men than in women.
For 2018, the American Cancer Society estimates 42,680 new diagnoses of kidney cancer in men and 22,660 in women.
For bladder cancer, the society estimates 62,380 new cases among men and 18,810 in women in 2018.
The most common cause of bladder cancer is smoking, Dr. Abouassaly says.
The carcinogens get absorbed in the blood and filter into the kidneys and bladder and they just sit there, he says. I recommend if you are a smoker, do everything you can to stop smoking.
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How Is Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia Treated
Treatment options for benign prostatic hyperplasia may include
- lifestyle changes
- minimally invasive procedures
A health care provider treats benign prostatic hyperplasia based on the severity of symptoms, how much the symptoms affect a mans daily life, and a mans preferences.
Men may not need treatment for a mildly enlarged prostate unless their symptoms are bothersome and affecting their quality of life. In these cases, instead of treatment, a urologist may recommend regular checkups. If benign prostatic hyperplasia symptoms become bothersome or present a health risk, a urologist most often recommends treatment.
How Is Hematuria Treated
The treatment will depend on the cause. Infections are likely treated with antibiotics. Prescription medications may be used for particularly painful kidney stones, or they may be broken down using extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy . An enlarged prostate could be treated using alpha blockers, or surgery depending on the severity.
Methods to prevent and avoid future issues with urine in the blood include drinking plenty of water, urinate immediately after sex, practice good hygiene and stop smoking. Some dietary changes can help such as reduced salt intake limiting certain foods like spinach and rhubarb.
So if youre dealing with blood in your urine make an appointment to let the doctors at Urology Center of Florida give you the treatment you need.
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When Does A Prostate Problem Need Treatment
BPH requires treatment only if the symptoms are severe enough to be troublesome to the patient, if the function of the urinary tract is seriously affected or if there are other complications, such as bleeding, kidney infections or kidney damage. An enlarged prostate by itself is not enough reason to need treatment.
What Are The Symptoms Of Benign Prostatic Hyperplasia
Lower urinary tract symptoms suggestive of benign prostatic hyperplasia may include
- urinary frequencyurination eight or more times a day
- urinary urgencythe inability to delay urination
- trouble starting a urine stream
- a weak or an interrupted urine stream
- dribbling at the end of urination
- nocturiafrequent urination during periods of sleep
- urinary incontinencethe accidental loss of urine
- pain after ejaculation or during urination
- urine that has an unusual color or smell
Symptoms of benign prostatic hyperplasia most often come from
- a blocked urethra
- a bladder that is overworked from trying to pass urine through the blockage
The size of the prostate does not always determine the severity of the blockage or symptoms. Some men with greatly enlarged prostates have little blockage and few symptoms, while other men who have minimally enlarged prostates have greater blockage and more symptoms. Less than half of all men with benign prostatic hyperplasia have lower urinary tract symptoms.3
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Bladder And Kidney Stones
Kidney and bladder stones are one of the most common causes of blood clots in urine. The stones are mostly painless, meaning you wont know until they grow bigger and cause blockage or are being passed in your urinary system. Minerals in concentrated urine form crystals on the walls of your kidneys or bladder. In time, these deposits made of minerals and salt turn into stones. They can affect any part of the urinary tract, from kidneys to bladder. The stones occur mostly when the urine is concentrated.
The good news is that there is no way to mistake the symptoms. Kidney stones cause excruciating pain, one that is hard to stomach and bear. Bladder and kidney stones can cause both gross and microscopic bleeding.
Hematuria: Blood In The Urine
Blood in the urine should never be ignored. This could be the first sign of a serious condition. In order to help your doctor with the correct diagnosis, you may try to provide details such as:
- Was it associated with pain?
- Did you see blood clots?
- What shape did the clots have?
- The color of the blood
- At what time during urination did you see blood in the urine ?
Blood in the urine can present in one of two ways:
- Gross hematuria
- Microscopic hematuria .
Both types can have serious causes.
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Medication For Urinary Problems
Your doctor may suggest various medications to help ease your urinary problems, including:
- medications to reduce the tone of the muscles of the urethra and prostate to minimise any constriction to urine flow caused when these muscles contract
- medication to reduce the size of the prostate gland. These medications work by blocking the action of male hormones produced by the prostate gland
- medications to relax the bladder, making unwanted contractions less likely and reducing the symptoms of urgency and frequency of urination
- the over-the-counter preparation ‘saw palmetto’ is sometimes used. This may help some men, especially if frequent urination at night is a problem.
However, recent reviews of the evidence for using saw palmetto as a treatment for mild or moderate urinary symptoms did not show any improvement, compared to no treatment, in men with BPH.;
How The Prostate Changes As You Age
Because the prostate gland tends to grow larger with age, it may squeeze the urethra and cause problems in passing urine. Sometimes men in their 30s and 40s may begin to have these urinary symptoms and need medical attention. For others, symptoms aren’t noticed until much later in life. An infection or a tumor can also make the prostate larger. Be sure to tell your doctor if you have any of the urinary symptoms listed below.
Tell your doctor if you have these urinary symptoms:
- Are passing urine more during the day
- Have an urgent need to pass urine
- Have less urine flow
- Feel burning when you pass urine
- Need to get up many times during the night to pass urine
Growing older raises your risk of prostate problems. The three most common prostate problems are inflammation , enlarged prostate , and prostate cancer.
One change does not lead to another. For example, having prostatitis or an enlarged prostate does not increase your risk of prostate cancer. It is also possible for you to have more than one condition at the same time.
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Questions You May Want To Consider Asking Your Doctor Include:
- What type of prostate problem do I have?
- Is more testing needed and what will it tell me?
- If I decide on watchful waiting, what changes in my symptoms should I look for and how often should I be tested?
- What type of treatment do you recommend for my prostate problem?
- For men like me, has this treatment worked?
- How soon would I need to start treatment and how long would it last?
- Do I need medicine and how long would I need to take it before seeing improvement in my symptoms?
- What are the side effects of the medicine?
- Are there other medicines that could interfere with this medication?
- If I need surgery, what are the benefits and risks?
- Would I have any side effects from surgery that could affect my quality of life?
- Are these side effects temporary or permanent?
- How long is recovery time after surgery?
- Will I be able to fully return to normal?
- How will this affect my sex life?
- How often should I visit the doctor to monitor my condition?
Prostate Problems Caused By Drinking Water
If you drink a lot of water, you might very well be creating prostate problems for yourself.
But, before we go further, let me just say I DO drink a lot of water each day myself. In fact, I drink over half my body weight in ounces and, that is something anyone with prostate problems or who wants to avoid prostate problems should do in my humble opinion.
But, at the same time, it can be dangerous.
Make your prostate GROW.
And even turn you into a girl!
Well, it is not that water is bad.
Frankly, it is essential for your prostate health.
It is that the plastic bottles you get water in or storing that water in that is the main villain.
Turns out, plastic has estrogenic compounds in it.
What does that mean?
It means, you are ingesting lots and lots of estrogen which can give you girl-like features , cause fat gain and, even worse for guys like us, make our prostates blow up in size like a balloon.
Personally, I am going to get a water filter.
I used to lug around these 5 gallons of water in plastic containers but am getting an under-the-counter water filter instead, and use glass jars to drink out of.
You may want to do the same.
At least, if you do not want a sex change.
Just something to consider about your prostate problems if you like to drink bottle water.
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When To See A Doctor For An Enlarged Prostate
If you are a male over the age of 40, you should see your doctor to monitor the size of your prostate especially if you have a family history of bladder cancer. You should also see your doctor if you notice blood in your urine, experience pain while urinating, or if you encounter any other symptoms related to a urinary tract infection.
Emily Lunardo studied medical sociology at York University with a strong focus on the social determinants of health and mental illness. She is a registered Zumba instructor, as well as a Canfit Pro trainer, who teaches fitness classes on a weekly basis. Emily practices healthy habits in her own life as well as helps others with their own personal health goals. Emily joined Bel Marra Health as a health writer in 2013.
Enlarged Prostate Treatments In The Pipeline
Researchers continue to investigate new therapies for enlarged prostates. “Another category of drugs is under development,” says Slawin. “We’ve come a long way in treating BPH. It’s no longer the life-threatening disease it once was. Now, in treatment, we’re working on quality of life issuesÃ¢â¬Â¦ reducing side effects of treatment.”
Also being studied is a procedure called water-induced thermotherapy , an experimental procedure that involves destroying excess prostate tissue utilizing heated water and an air-filled balloon, which protects normal prostate tissue. The procedure is performed with only local anesthesia. Results may not be fully apparent for three to four months. However, preliminary studies examining WIT have shown positive results, with a near doubling in urine flow. However, the American Urological Association has not thus far endorsed WIT as a viable treatment option for symptoms of BPH.
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Other Tests May Include:
Cystoscopy. This is a procedure a urologist performs to see inside the bladder and urethra . The doctor uses a thin tube with a camera and light on the end–called a cystoscope–to look for cancer cells or other problems.Kidney imaging tests. The doctor may order an imaging test such as ultrasound, CT scan or MRI to look for a tumor, a kidney or bladder stone, an enlarged prostate or other problem.
Your doctor may order one more urine test to look for signs of infection, kidney disease and cancer. You may have a blood test to check for high levels of the protein creatinine, a sign of kidney disease.
In many cases, the doctor is not able to find out why there is blood in the urine, Dr. Smith notes. He or she may decide to retest your urine in a year. If blood is found, you may undergo more tests. Or you may be retested several years later.
What Are The Complications Associated With Hematuria
Some of the causes of blood in the urine are serious, so you should contact your healthcare provider if you notice this symptom.
If the symptom is due to cancer, ignoring it can lead to an advancement of the tumors to the point that treatment is difficult. Untreated infections can ultimately lead to kidney failure.
Treatment can help reduce symptoms if the cause of hematuria is an enlarged prostate. Ignoring it may lead to discomfort from needing to urinate frequently, severe pain, and even cancer.
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Symptoms Of Benign Prostate Enlargement
The symptoms of benign prostate enlargement are caused by the enlarged prostate placing pressure on the bladder and urethra .
This can affect urination in a number of ways. For example, it can:
- make it difficult for you to start urinating
- weaken the;flow of urine or cause “stopping and starting”
- cause you to strain to pass urine
- cause you to need to urinate;frequently
- cause you to wake up frequently during the night to urinate
- cause a sudden urge to urinate, which can result in;urinary incontinence if you can’t find a toilet quickly enough
- cause you to not be able to empty your bladder fully
- cause blood in the urine
In the later stages, benign prostate enlargement can cause urine retention and other complications such as;bladder stones,;bladder infections and kidney damage.
Blood That You Can’t See
Sometimes there is blood in your urine that you can’t see. This is called microscopic hematuria because it is only visible under a microscope. “Guidelines state that any more than three red blood cells in a urine sample under microscope should prompt a referral to a urologist,” Dr. Bakare says. Routine urine tests can be part of annual wellness exams.
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