Why It Is Done
A urine test may be done:
- To check for a disease or infection of the
urinary tract . Symptoms of a urine infection may
include colored or bad-smelling urine, pain when urinating, finding it hard to urinate,
flank pain, blood in the urine (hematuria), or fever.
- To check the
treatment of conditions such as diabetes, kidney stones, a urinary tract
infection (UTI), high blood pressure (hypertension),
or some kidney or liver diseases.
- As part of a regular physical examination.
How To Prepare
Do not eat foods that can color the
urine, such as blackberries, beets, and rhubarb, before the test. Do not
exercise strenuously before the test.
Tell your doctor if you are menstruating or close to starting your menstrual
period. Your doctor may want to wait to do the test.
Your doctor may ask
you to stop taking certain medicines that color the urine. These include
vitamin B, phenazopyridine (Pyridium), rifampin, and phenytoin (Dilantin). Be
sure to tell your doctor if you are taking
diuretics, which may affect the test results.
Talk to your doctor any concerns you have regarding
the need for the test, its risks, how it will be done, or what the results will
mean. To help you understand the importance of this test, fill out the
medical test information form(What is a PDF document?).
How It Is Done
A routine urine test can be done in your
doctor's office, clinic, or lab. You may also be asked to collect
a urine sample at home and bring it with you to the office or lab for
Collecting a urine sample from a small child or baby is done by using a special plastic bag with tape around
its opening. The bag is placed around the child's genitals until he or she urinates. Then you carefully remove
the bag. To collect a urine sample from a very sick baby, a doctor may use a urinary catheter through the
urethra or a needle through the baby's belly directly into the bladder (suprapubic tap).
Clean-catch midstream one-time urine collection
- Wash your hands to make sure they are clean
before collecting the urine.
- If the collection cup has a lid,
remove it carefully and set it down with the inner surface up. Do not touch the
inside of the cup with your fingers.
- Clean the area around your
- A man should retract the foreskin, if
present, and clean the head of his penis with medicated towelettes or
- A woman should spread open the genital folds of skin with
one hand. Then she can use her other hand to clean the area around the
urethra with medicated towelettes or swabs. She should
wipe the area from front to back so bacteria from the
anus is not wiped across the urethra.
- Begin urinating into the toilet or urinal. A
woman should hold apart the genital folds of skin while she
- After the urine has flowed for several seconds, place the
collection cup into the urine stream and collect about
2 fl oz (60 mL) of this
"midstream" urine without stopping your flow of urine.
- Do not
touch the rim of the cup to your genital area. Do not get toilet paper, pubic
hair, stool (feces), menstrual blood, or anything else in the urine
- Finish urinating into the toilet or
- Carefully replace and tighten the lid on the cup, and then
return it to the lab. If you are collecting the urine at home and cannot get it
to the lab in an hour, refrigerate it.
Double-voided urine sample collection