Description of Albuminuria
- Albumin is a protein in your blood
- The body requires protein
- An important nutrient which repair tissue, build muscle and fight inflammation and infection.
- Albumin must be in the blood, not the urine
- Protein (albumin) in the urine, is termed proteinuria or albuminuria
What is the problem when protein (albumin) is found in your urine?
- Filtering blood is a key function of the kidneys
- The kidneys retain important nutrients, like protein, in your bloodstream
- They eliminate extra water and waste substances from the body
- With healthy kidneys, there should not be protein in the urine or very little
- Damaged kidneys can dribble protein into the urine
How can I establish whether protein is present in my urine?
- Go for a basic urine test
- Should be part of any routine examination
- You will be required to urinate into a specimen cup
- Approximately 2 tablespoons is enough for the test
- Some urine will be tested with a dipstick (thin, plastic strip)
- Remainder of urine will be examined with a microscope
- At a lab an albumin to creatinine-ratio (ACR) test will be conducted
- ACR-test reveals if there is albumin in the urine
- Normal quantity of albumin – less than 30-mg/g
- Quantities found over 30-mg/g reveals some stage of kidney disease even with a GFR-number higher than 60
Does albuminuria means I developed kidney disease?
- Can be a pointer of kidney disease
- Albuminuria can also be cause by not drinking an ample amount of water
- The doctor will repeat the albumin test if kidney disease is suspected
- 3 positive results during a 3-month period or longer is a pointer of kidney disease
- An uncomplicated GFR-test will also be conducted; this test evaluates how effectively your kidneys are functioning
- Other possible tests include: a CT scan or ultrasound (imaging tests). This creates an image of your urinary tract and kidneys. Kidney stones and other disorders can be shown; a kidney biopsy can reveal what is the cause of your kidney disease as well as the amount of damage done.
If albuminuria is diagnosed, do I need any treatment?
- When kidney disease is diagnosed, your doctor will provide you with a treatment plan.
- You may be required to consult with a nephrologist (a kidney specialist)
- Treatment can include:
- Changes in lifestyle for example, exercising, weight loss, quit smoking
Albuminuria: How frequent must I be tested?
- Individuals who are more prone to develop kidney disease should undergo such a test at all routine check-ups with their doctor
- People with an elevated risk include:
- Have a family background of kidney failure
- Suffering from hypertension (high blood pressure)
- Some ethnic groups like African Americans, Asians, American Indians and Hispanics.
- 65-years or above