Archive for the ‘hematuria’ Category

What Women Need To Know About Their Partner’s Health

September 18, 2015

Women are drives of healthcare. They are responsible for helping to see that their partners take good care of themselves. My wife makes an appointment for my annual physical exam each year and accompanies me to the doctor to be sure that I explain all of my concerns and that she has the instructions for the recommendations and follow up. I don’t think my situation is unique as most women not take care of themselves but also the healthcare of their partner. This article will discuss 5 conditions that can impact a man’s health and should come to the attention of a physician\urologist.

Erectile dysfunction is often a sign of something more serious. About 70% of ED cases are caused by existing medical conditions, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol or heart disease. The more advanced these diseases are, the more at risk a man is for ED. In most cases, ED is treatable. If you loved one has ED, encourage him seek medical care.

Prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men. About 1 in 7 men will be diagnosed with prostate cancer. The number jumps to 1 in 5 if he’s African-American and 1 in 3 if he has a family history of prostate cancer. Men should know their risk and talk to their doctors about whether prostate cancer screening is right for them.

Male infertility is more common than you think. In about 40% of infertile couples, the male partner is either the sole cause or a contributing cause of infertility.

If he has blood in his urine, pay attention. This can be a sign of a urinary tract infection, kidney stone, enlarged prostate or an early sign of bladder or kidney cancer. All men who have blood in the urine should see their doctor\urologist.

Testicular cancer is the most common cancer in men ages 15-35. Although there is nothing to prevent testicular cancer, if the cancer is caught early, there is a high cure rate. Signs of testicular cancer include persistent pain or a bump in the testicular area.

Finally, if they are going to the bathroom more than three times each night, they should be seen by a doctor. This could be a sign of a prostate or bladder problem, or potentially something more serious.

Bottom Line: Men have unique medical problems and women can be so helpful in directing men to a healthcare provider. I hope this article should be kept in mind regarding your male loved one’s medical health.

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Red Urine After Eating Beets

August 16, 2014

I have noticed that my urine turns red after eating beets. Is this a problem?

Don’t be alarmed as this is a normal occurance after eating beets. There’s even a medical name for red urine from eating beets, beeturia. The color is caused by the excretion of betalain (betacyanin) pigments. The coloring is highly variable between individuals and between different occasions and can vary in intensity. Beeturia is often associated with red or pink feces.

If, however, if the urine doesn’t return to the normal yellow color in 24-48 hours after the consumption of beets, then this is probably related to something else and does require the attention of your physician.

When Your Pee Changes Color

January 27, 2011

Most of us are uncomfortable talking about our waste products, urine and feces.  However, changes in the color and odor may signify disease that can be treated or prevented.  This article will review causes of discoloration of urine and when there is a change in the odor of urine. 

For hundreds of years doctors have looked at urine as a barometer of what is happening in the body.  The urine can tell what you have been eating, how much fluid you are consuming, and what diseases you may have.  Early doctors even tasted the urine of their patients in order to diagnose their medical conditions.  Fortunately, we have made progress and a simple urinalysis can make this determination in seconds.                   

Urine is an important part of the body’s regulation process. Its job is to remove the extra water and wastes that the kidneys filter out of the blood. The urine is there primarily to get rid of toxins or things that would otherwise build up in the body that would be bad for the body.

When you notice that your urine has changed color, or there’s a strange odor emanating from the toilet, the cause might be something as harmless as what you had for dinner such as asparagus. It also might be a sign of a more serious condition, such as an infection or cancer. 

Color Changes

Urine normally varies from pale yellow to deep amber, depending on the concentration of the urine, which is determined by the amount of fluid you consume. Darker urine is usually a sign that you’re not drinking enough water.   Correction is as simple as consuming more liquids, especially water. 

The opposite is also true. If your urine is very pale, it means that you’re either drinking a lot of fluid, or you’re taking a diuretic or water pill which is a drug that forces the body to eliminate excess water.

Urine can turn a rainbow of colors, and an unusual hue isn’t necessarily cause for alarm. Certain medications can turn the urine fluorescent green or blue, the carotene in carrots can tint it orange, and vitamins can give it a yellow hue.  Pyridium, a medication, which is used to treat burning on urination, will turn the urine orange-red.

Seeing red is typically a sign that there is blood in the urine, but before you panic, know that a little blood can produce a dramatic color change. Just like a drop of food coloring will add color to a large volume of food or fluids, it only takes one drop of blood to turn an entire toilet bowl red.

Red urine is usually an ominous sign and can indicate an infection or maybe even cancer.  Red blood is a real warning sign and should prompt you to see your doctor or urologist, a doctor who specializes in disease of the kidneys and bladder.

Odor Changes

Urine normally doesn’t have a very strong smell. If your urine has a foul odor, you could have an infection or urinary stones, which can create an ammonia-like odor. Diabetics might notice that their urine smells sweet, because of excess sugar.

Some foods can also change urine odor. Asparagus is among the most notorious. What people are smelling when they eat asparagus is the breakdown of a sulfur compound called methyl mercaptan (the same compound found in garlic).

How Often Do You Need to Go?

How often you need to go can be as important an indicator of your health as the color or smell of your urine. Most people take bathroom breaks about six to eight times a day, but you might go more or less depending on how much fluid you drink. If you’re constantly feeling the urge to go and it’s not because you’re not drinking extra fluid, causes can include:

Overactive bladder  (when you gotta go, you gotta go!), urinary tract infection, Interstitial cystitis (painful urination without an infection), prostate gland enlargement, and diabetes. 

The opposite problem, not going to the bathroom enough, can occur when there is a blockage or infection. Or, it can be the result of bad bathroom habits. Some people — especially teachers, surgeons, and anyone else who doesn’t have time for regular bathroom breaks throughout the day — tend to hold it in.

Delaying urination can also cause problems.  The bladder can develop a chronic over-distension and will not empty completely.  As a result urine is left in the bladder and can be a source for developing a urinary tract infection.

Develop good bathroom habits.

Drink whenever you’re thirsty, but certainly increase your fluids before going outside in the hot summer sun or before exercising. 

If you’re getting up during the night to use the bathroom, stop drinking three to four hours before bedtime. Limit caffeine, which can irritate the lining of the bladder. Also watch your intake of alcohol, which can have an effect similar to a diuretic.

Finally, don’t hold it in. Don’t delay answering the call of the rest room.  Your bladder will thank you.

Bottom Line:  Pay attention to the color and odor of your urine.  If there is a change, contact your physician.

Let’s Get To The “Meat” of the Matter-Red Meat and Bladder Cancer

August 2, 2010

Already linked with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and certain cancers, including cancer of the pancreas, red meat was found by a team of US researchers to be a possible cause of bladder cancer.

For the study, scientists assessed the intake of nitrates, nitrites and other components found in red meat, in some 300,00 men and women aged 50-71 year, in eight US states, and its relation to cancer.

The study participants were followed up for up to eight years. During that time, 854 were diagnosed with cancer of the bladder.

For those who can’t do without their bacon-cheeseburger, some good news: scientists found no associations between beef, bacon, hamburger, sausage or steak and bladder cancer.

But they did observe a positive association for red meat cold cuts and bladder cancer.

The culprits in the cold cuts are nitrates and nitrites which are added to meat when it is processed to preserve and enhance color and flavor.

The scientists found that people whose diets were high in nitrites had a nearly a 30 percent greater chance of developing bladder cancer than those who consumed the lowest amount of either compound.

What’s the bottom line: If you are at risk for bladder cancer or you have had bladder cancer, I suggest that you restrict your intake of red meat and cold cuts.  Your bladder will thank you!