If you have spotted blood in your urine, it is important to see a doctor to find out what’s wrong. The cause can often be identified with some simple tests at your GP clinic, but sometimes it is necessary to see a specialist for additional haematuria investigations.
Seeing a Doctor
The doctor will usually begin by asking about your symptoms and medical history, particularly any medication you are taking as some drugs can increase the risk of bleeding. You will then have some simple tests:
- Physical exam, which may include a rectal or vaginal exam
- Blood pressure check, as high blood pressure can cause non-visible blood in the pee due to kidney damage
- Blood test to check for kidney disease, issues with blood clotting and other potential problems
- Urine test to check for infection, the most common cause for blood in the urine
These tests can all be carried out by your GP if you see them before visiting a specialist. If the results show that you have a simple problem like a urinary infection, your GP may be able to provide some initial treatment. In some cases you may need to be referred on to a specialist for more tests. You will usually need to see a urologist first, and sometimes also a nephrologist when kidney problems are identified.
Specialist Tests for Haematuria
When you see a specialist about blood in your urine
, the doctor will be able to run some additional tests to find out what’s wrong:
- More blood and urine tests to check for issues such as kidney problems or cancer
- An ultrasound scan to check your kidneys and bladder or look for possible cancer. Other imaging scans such as a CT scan, MRI or X-ray may also be recommended.
- Cystoscopy is important to examine the bladder and urethra for signs of cancer or other disease.
The results of these tests should help your specialist identify the cause of the blood in your urine, or at least to rule out some of the potential problems. If an issue is detected during your haematuria investigations, the doctor will advise you on the next steps, including additional tests, treatments and monitoring.