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Dr. G MD
Dr. G MD, Board Certified Physician
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 349
Experience:  Vanderbilt Trained. Kidney disease, high blood pressure, Internal Medicine, Kidney Transplant
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what does it mean to have to much protein in your urine

Resolved Question:

what does it mean to have to much protein in your urine?
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. G MD replied 7 years ago.
First off, the protein is most likely coming from the kidneys and this is abnormal.

The job of the kidneys is to do three things:
1. Clean and filter the urine...toxins are seperated from blood and ultimately flushed down the toilet.

2. When filtering, the kidneys should KEEP the good things in the blood such as red and white blood cells and protein.

3. Make certain hormones that the rest of your body uses to make blood and keep your bones strong.

If there is protein in your urine, there is likely some amount of damage to the kidneys. You will definitely want to see a nephrologist (kidney specialist) to get further info on this. There are SEVERAL different causes of protein in the urine including diabetes, long-standing high blood pressure, auto-immune disorders, certain types of cancer (oddly enough not kidney cancer).

The first step for the nephrologist is to quantify the amount of protein in the urine. He or she will then likely send you to the lab for many blood tests to see if there are any obvious causes of the protein. You may also undergo a kidney ultrasound to look at the kidneys size and shape. Finally, you and your doctor may discuss the need for a kidney biopsy. Biopsy DOES NOT mean cancer. It means using a needle to take a small piece of tissue to evaluate under the microscope.

Treatment options will depend on the cause of the protein in the urine and your overall kidney function. Treatment may include a certain type of blood pressure medication that also lowers protein the urine. Treatment could also include steroids such as prednisone or other similar medications.

Finally, people who have protein in the urine in LARGE amounts are at increased risk for blood clots and cholesterol problems. They also may develop swelling in the legs and other problems.

This really is something that deserves further evaluation by a nephrologist.

Best of luck to you. Please let me know if I can help you further.
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