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Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Blood In Urine Is Deemed Under Investigated

Preventative tests can help identify bladder pre-cancer and early bladder cancers when they are treatable. Women are less likely than men to be appropriately checked for bladder cancers when they test positive for blood in their urine according to a new study. Blood in your urine is called hematuria. If you can see it it is macroscopic, if you are told at the gyno office you have it, it's considered microscopic. The most common cause is bladder infection, but typically symptoms, positive bacterial cultures and other urine findings confirm the report. Many women will have appropriate testing for hematuria that is completely negative: nothing specific is ever found but random tests will show hematuria over weeks, months or years. Not everyone with hematuria will have a treatable disease. However there are a whole score of conditions that can lead to hematuria that should be investigated should you have this on testing. However at the American Urologic Society 2014 Annual Scientific Meeting a study was presented that showed women (and they actually studied men as well) often don't have enough testing to prove that hematuria is not cancer. Bladder cancer picked up early is very treatable, and as with other cancers not as treatable.  The tests that the experts recommended for women with hematuria are CT scans and cystoscopy (looking into the bladder). Appropriate testing for hematuria that is persistent needs to be  be worked up according to Moben Mirza, MD, assistant professor urology at the University of Kansas Medical Center in Kansas City, who was not involved in the study, but quoted in reviews of the study. We advocate continuing your annual care, whether a pap smear is due or not, because checking for hematuria is another important test women should have on a regular basis. At the time of the gyno visit, you can review all your risk factors for bladder and kidney disease and what you can do to prevent these conditions. Go on line at www.womenshealthpractice.com to sign up for an appointment or newsletters.

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