If your urine color is anything besides a light yellow or clear, your body is probably trying to tell you something. Often, it’s not anything dire. Vibrant yellow urine is typically caused by excess vitamins. Orange or dark brown urine could mean dehydration. Food coloring can even cause your urine to turn blue or green, as can certain medications. 

When you see red or pink in your urine, however, it could mean something more serious. 

Sometimes, foods like beets or blueberries can cause your urine to turn a reddish hue. However, a red or pink shade can also mean that there is blood in your urine. Before you start to worry, it’s important to understand what’s going on.  

When red blood cells enter your urine, it’s called hematuria. Typically, your kidneys separate blood and urine. The blood goes back into your body while your urine exits to the bladder and then through the urethra. Certain conditions, however, can cause red blood cells to remain in your urine. 

This may cause your urine to change color, or it may not. There are actually two types of hematuria:  

Microscopic hematuria is when the blood in your urine can only be seen under a microscope. 

Gross hematuria is when you can visibly see the color red (or possibly other shades) in your urine.  

Though only gross hematuria is noticed without lab testing, both can be signs of a larger issue. 

What Causes Hematuria?

Hematuria is actually fairly common. This is due to the fact that it can be caused by a number of conditions. Common causes of hematuria include: 

    • UTIs 
    • Kidney infections 
    • Kidney stones 
    • Prostate conditions 
    • Cancer 
    • Injury 
    • Cysts 
    • Mineral imbalances 
    • And more 

Hematuria itself is often painless, though the underlying condition may cause discomfort.  

What to Do About Blood in Your Urine 

If you continue to see blood or discoloration in your urine, do not assume it’s temporary. Though it could be a simple, non-threating issue, it could also be the first signs of a more significant problem. The only way to find out is to see a urologist.  

A urologist will likely examine your bladder and kidney areas first. Depending on the situation, an ultrasound or CT scan may be needed. Alternatively, they may perform a cystoscopy. This involves using a thin tube with a camera to look inside the urethra and bladder.   

Once the source of the hematuria has been identified, treatment options can be explored.  

Sometimes, there’s no direct cause at all. This is called idiopathic hematuria. Idiopathic hematuria can run in families. If there doesn’t appear to be any direct cause, your doctor will likely ask you to be mindful of the situation and watch for any other symptoms. 

If you’re in need of a trustworthy urology doctor in the Dayton, Ohio area, contact Urology Specialists of Ohio today!