Module 8: Introduction to the Routine Urinalysis
The routine urinalysis
The routine urinalysis is a quick and relatively inexpensive test that can be readily performed in a modest clinical laboratory or in a clinical setting. The results are useful in a variety of situations and are not limited to those directly involving the urinary tract.
Routine urinalysis is an essential part of the diagnostic evaluation of sick patients and the results should be interpreted along with the results of a chemistry panel. Ideally, urine should always be collected at the same time as blood for hematology and clinical chemistry and prior to any treatment (including intravenous fluids) or interventions. The complete interpretation of results of CBC/chemistry panels cannot be interpreted adequately without concurrent knowledge of the urinalysis, particularly abnormalities in renal (e.g. urea nitrogen and creatinine) or acid-base parameters. Similarly, interpretation of some abnormalities in urine (e.g. glucosuria, ketonuria) is facilitated by concurrent knowledge of chemistry results.