Blood in the Urine

Illustration showing the outline of the body with the organs of the urinary system, including the kidneys, ureter, bladder, and urethra.

Blood in the urine (hematuria) has many possible causes. If it occurs after an injury (such as a car accident or fall), it's most often a sign of bruising to the kidney or bladder. Common causes of blood in the urine include urinary tract infections, kidney stones, inflammation, tumors, or certain other diseases of the kidney or bladder. Menstruation can cause blood to appear in the urine sample, but it's not coming from the urinary tract.

If only a tiny (trace) amount of blood is present, it will show up on the urine test, even though the urine may be yellow and not pink or red. This may occur with any of the above conditions, as well as heavy exercise or high fever. In this case, your healthcare provider may want to repeat the urine test on another day. This will show if there's still blood in the urine. If there is, then other tests can be done to find out the cause.

Home care

Follow these home care guidelines:

  • If your urine doesn't look bloody (pink, brown, or red) then you don't need to restrict your activity in any way.

  • If you can see blood in your urine, rest and don't do any strenuous activity until your next exam. Don't use aspirin, blood thinners, or antiplatelet or anti-inflammatory medicines. These include ibuprofen and naproxen. These thin the blood and may increase bleeding. Call your healthcare provider to talk about using these medicines.

Follow-up care

Follow up with your healthcare provider, or as advised. If you were injured and had blood in your urine, you should have a repeat urine test in 1 to 2 days. Contact your provider for this test.

A radiologist will review any X-rays that were taken. You'll be told of any new findings that may affect your care.

When to get medical advice

Call your healthcare provider right away if any of these occur:

  • Bright red blood or blood clots in the urine (if you didn't have this before)

  • Weakness, dizziness, or fainting

  • New groin, belly, or back pain

  • Fever of 100.4ºF (38ºC) or higher, or as advised by your provider

  • Repeated vomiting

  • Bleeding from the nose or gums, or easy bruising

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