Routine urine tests are part of prenatal visits to screen for infection or other conditions. Testing for the presence of protein in the urine (proteinuria) is necessary to determine if your kidney function is normal. Although proteins are normally absent in the urine, having a small amount of it during pregnancy is common. It can indicate kidney dysfunction, but it can also be related to infection, stress, or other conditions that need to be evaluated further.
Causes of Protein in Urine During Pregnancy
1. Preeclampsia. Women with this condition have high blood pressure during pregnancy, accompanied by water retention and protein in their urine. It can lead to complications including ...view middle of the document...
How to Test if Protein in Urine During Pregnancy Is Normal or Serious?
How to diagnose
Finding protein in urine may be a sign of urinary tract infection. Further laboratory analysis of the urine may be needed to determine what type of infection you have and the appropriate antibiotics to treat it.
Another urine test may be done during your next appointment to see if protein is still present in the urine or if it has increased in amount. Women who are in their second or third trimester may develop preeclampsia, a serious condition that can affect you and the baby.
Pre-eclampsia causes an increase in blood pressure and adversely affects kidney function, resulting in retention of waste products in the body. Proteins normally found in the blood leak from the kidneys into the urine, leading to proteinuria.
To diagnose preeclampsia, your blood pressure will be monitored and your urine examined for proteinuria. A 24-hour urine collection may be done to determine how much proteins are in your urine as well as blood tests to check on your blood count, blood clotting, liver, and kidney function.
When to see a doctor
During mid-pregnancy and onwards, watch out for symptoms such as:
blurring of vision
flashing in your eyes
pain in the upper right side of the abdomen
a general feeling of being sick
These symptoms must prompt you to seek immediate treatment.
What Other Things do Urine Tests During Pregnancy Detect?
Aside from protein, your doctor examines your urine during your prenatal visits to screen for other conditions, which may be indicated by the presence of:
Although small amounts of sugar in the urine is normal during pregnancy, elevated levels...