What is the Urine Microalbumin Test and Why Would You Need It?

The doctor, it generates a belief, that you might be having some form of kidney problems, would ask you to get a urine microalbumin test. The test might be conducted if there is some risk of kidney disease or kidney damage. The microalbuminuria test is a type of urine test that would measure the amount of albumin in the urine. The albumin is a protein that is used by the body for the growth in the cells. It is also used for repair of the damaged tissues. The protein is normally present in the blood but if the level reaches a certain point in the urine, it is actually a sign of kidney damage.

The kidney is the organ which has the responsibility of removing waste products from the blood and regulate the levels of fluids in the body. The healthy kidneys would remove the waste from the body and the nutrients and proteins that are essential to the health would stay in the body. If the kidneys are functioning properly, then the albumin would stay in the blood. When there is some damage in the kidneys, it might not be able to keep the albumin in the blood and some of it would start to spill out through the urine. The condition that is faced at this stage is known as albuminuria. The term is simply used to mean that there is albumin in the urine.

The microalbuminuria test can also be referred to as the albumin-to-creatinine ratio (ACR) test at times. The anti HCV test might be conducted to find out if there is a presence of the Hepatitis C virus in the blood. The virus is known to affect the liver and also some other complications.

Why is the test conducted?

The test might be recommended to you by the doctor if there is some suspicion that you have risks of kidney damage. It is very important for the doctor to diagnose the problems in the kidneys as soon as possible. Proper treatment might be able to delay the disease or prevent it. Some of the most common causes of kidney problems are hypertension and diabetes. The doctor might order the tests if you have such problems. The test measures the amount of albumin in the urine. This test would generally be conducted along with the creatinine test so that an albumin-to-creatinine ratio can be offered. Creatinine is actually a waste product in the blood that should be removed by the kidneys. During the kidney diseases, the creatinine levels would decrease in the urine and the levels of albumin rise.

The underlying conditions or the symptoms of kidney damage would decide how often you would be needing the urine albumin tests. The urine might even appear foamy if the kidney damage is extensive. There might even be swelling in the face, hands, feet and abdomen. The swine flu test should also be conducted to keep yourself safe from flu. This is a must for people who wish to be safe from any chances of contracting swine flu. This test is not that complicated and can be done quite easily.

How would the test proceed?

The tests might be different:

  • Random urine test – The test can be taken any time. The test is generally conducted in the clinic. The sample needs to be collected in a sterile cup and it would be sent to the laboratory for further analysis as well.
  • 24-hour urine test – All of the urine over a 24-hour period is needed to be collected in this process. A container would be provided by the doctor for urine collection. This needs to be kept in the refrigerator. You would have to return the container after the procedure is over.
  • Timed urine test – The doctor might ask you to be providing a urine sample in the morning or explicit instructions would be given. For instance, you might need to offer a sample after 4 hours of not urinating. These are certain things that you would do well to keep in mind at all times.

What would be meant by the results?

Albuminuria denotes the presence of excessive amounts of albumin in the urine. Microalbuminuria would mean small amounts of albumin in the urine, while macroalbuminuria would mean very high amounts. The results are measured in mg of protein leakage. If the results are more than 30 mg of proteins, it means you are in trouble so watch out for any such signs on the results.

Thus the test is a very good measure of damage in the kidneys and will help you take prompt corrective action based on medical advice. These tests should be carried out without fail if you are looking to assess the condition of your kidneys.

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