What do pus cells in urine mean ?
One of the most useful and cheap tests available for diagnosis of a urine sample is urinalysis. It is a great test to identify the presence of unwanted materials and toxic substances in urine. A urinalysis can aid in the detection of blood in urine, glucose in urine, crystals in urine as well as pus cells in urine. Pus cells in urine are generally an indication of the presence of an infection in the body.
When the body is affected by some disease, then it results in pus cells in urine. Medically, the passage of pus cells into the urine is known as pyuria. This condition of pus cells in urine can be either gross or microscopic. The presence of an excessive number of pus cells in urine may make it purulent or cloudy in appearance.
Pus cells in urine refer to bad white blood cells and point to a possible infection in the body. This is more so if bacteria is also present in the urine. Pus cells in urine can also signify that there may be an inflammation or infection of the bladder or the kidneys. The urine has to travel via the kidneys and the bladder before elimination from the body. Hence it is possible that pus cells may be passed onto the urine from the infected bladder and kidneys.
It is not possible to identify the type of disorder affecting the patient just by verifying the presence of pus cells in urine. In such instances, the doctor usually recommends a urine sample for culture and sensitivity testing. The doctor may also advise blood tests to check for the presence of unwanted materials in the blood and the levels of its different components.
Symptoms of pus cells in urine
Pus cells in urine may not result in the development of any outward or visible symptoms in the affected individual. However, some of the signs and symptoms of pus cells in urine that may become apparent are as follows:
- Cramps in the abdomen
- Burning and painful sensation during urination
Even though these symptoms are common for a number of conditions, it is important to immediately consult a doctor for early diagnosis and effective treatment.
Causes of pus cells in urine
Some of the causes of pus cells in urine are listed below:
- Infections of the urinary tract: This is the most common cause of pus cells in urine. Any part of the urinary tract from the bladder, to the kidneys, to the urethra may be affected by infection. However, cystitis or bladder infection is generally the most common cause of pus cells in urine. Urinary tract infections are not serious and can be easily treated with the aid of antibiotics.
Urinary tract infections may also be caused due to a number of other causes other than infection by bacteria. Some of these causes leading to pus in urine are as follows:
- Other microorganisms: A few organisms that cause urinary tract infections generally remain undetected in the urine culture test for identifying the presence of bacteria in urine. Sexually transmitted organisms are one of such unidentifiable agents. The doctor usually a battery of other tests for urine to identify the presence of such organisms that are causing the infection and the pus cells in urine.
- Tuberculosis: Individuals with tuberculosis of the urinary tract may also eliminate pus cells in urine. The urine sample of such patients may not yield results of bacterial presence. Hence other tests are needed to check for the presence of this condition
- Interstitial cystitis: This is a condition that affects more women than men and is a non-infectious disorder that leads to bladder inflammation. A urine culture done for finding the cause of pus cells in urine does not detect this condition.
- Kidney stones: Stones in the kidneys may also cause pus cells in urine. The condition is usually accompanied by blood in urine
- Inflammation of prostate: This condition in men can result in pus cells in urine
- Disorder of other organs: Sometimes, a disease affecting the organs located near the urinary tract may also result in the formation of pus cells in urine
- Kidney diseases: Various types of conditions can affect the kidney functionality. Some such conditions include lupus nephritis, polycystic kidneys, renal papillary necrosis, glomerulonephritis, renal tubular acidosis and interstitial nephritis. These disorders of the kidneys can result in pus cells in urine in addition to other symptoms such as blood and protein in urine.
- Cancer: Kidney and bladder cancers can also cause pus cells in urine along with blood urine. Such cancers are generally found in individuals at an increased age of over forty years.
- Other causes: Pus cells in urine can also result from dehydration, stress, certain medications and even excessive exercising. Additionally, any form of surgery involving the urinary tract may result in pus cells in urine, even if infection is absent.
Treatment of pus cells in urine
- The treatment for pus cells in urine is aimed at finding out the underlying causes and then treating them.
- Antibiotics are usually given to treat bacterial infection of the urinary tract
- Surgery and other treatment methods may be used to treat kidney stones.