Hematuria is a medical term for describing the presence of blood in urine. It should not be mistaken as an illness as it is not. Rather, hematuria is a symptom for a possible medical condition.
It can be classified as gross or microscopic. If blood in plentiful amounts is present in urine, then it is termed as gross hematuria. If laboratory results show the presence of blood in urine, however it is not visible to the naked eye, then it is termed as microscopic hematuria. Usually, what causes gross hematuria can also be a possible cause of microscopic hematuria. Below are the most common causes for this symptom.
Urinary Tract Infection
A urinary tract infection can cause microscopic hematuria. The most common urinary tract infection is the bladder infection, where a bacterium that has infiltrated multiplies inside it. The hematuria should be gone once the urinary tract infection is treated with antibiotics.
Glomerulonephritis occurs when the tiny blood vessels inside the kidneys (glomeruli) become inflamed. This condition is also referred to as glomeruli nephritis and is also one cause of microscopic hematuria. Sometimes the condition requires treatment and sometimes it goes away on its own. Either way, once the glomerulonephritis has been treated, the hematuria also stops.
In some instances, certain types of medicines can cause microscopic hematuria. Among those drugs that can be a cause of blood to be present in the urine are Coumadin, pills for birth control, diuretics, some anti-depressants, penicillin and aspirin.
Kidney Stones or Bladder Stones
The formation of stones either in the kidneys or in the bladder can also cause microscopic hematuria. Once these stones are removed however, the hematuria should also be treated.
Inherited diseases, which are more commonly known as diseases of the blood, can also cause microscopic hematuria. An example is sickle cell anemia, which almost always causes this symptom.
Tumors in the Urinary Tract
The growth of tumors in the urinary tract can also cause microscopic hematuria. Benign or malignant tumors can both cause this symptom. However, hematuria will also be resolved once the tumor has been removed or has dissolved through medication.
As uncommon as it may seem, in some instances, exercise can also cause the presence of blood in urine. Microscopic hematuria that is caused by exercise will typically go away within twenty-four hours and is not considered to be serious. However, if blood is constantly seen in the urine, then a doctor should be consulted to evaluate other possible causes for it.