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What causes blood in the urine?

Most of the causes of blood in the urine are not serious. For example, heavy exercise may cause blood in the urine, which often goes away in a day.

 

Other, more serious causes include:

  • Cancer

  • Kidney infection or disease

  • Urinary tract infection (UTI)

  • Enlarged prostate (men only)

  • Kidney or bladder stones

  • Certain diseases (like sickle cell anemia and cystic kidney disease)

  • Injury to the kidneys

 

How is blood in the urine treated?

If you have blood in your urine that lasts more than a day, see a health care provider, especially if you have unexplained weight loss, discomfort with urination, frequent urination, or urgent urination. Treatment will depend on the cause of the blood in the urine.

 

Key points about blood in urine

Blood in the urine means there are red blood cells (RBCs) in the urine. Often, the urine looks normal. But when checked under a microscope, it contains a high number of red blood cells. In some cases, the urine is pink, red, or the color of tea, which can be seen without the use of a microscope. Most of the causes of blood in the urine are not serious. For example, in some cases, strenuous exercise will cause blood in the urine.

Some more serious causes of blood in the urine are cancer, infection, enlarged prostate (men only), kidney or bladder stones, and certain diseases (like sickle cell anemia and cystic kidney disease). Blood in the urine can often be diagnosed with urine tests. If these are not clear, imaging tests may be needed to look at the urinary tract.

Treatment depends on the cause of the blood in the urine.