Blood in the urine is a condition known as hematuria, which occurs when your kidneys (or other parts of your urinary tract) allow blood cells to leak into the urine. In many cases, hematuria is not serious. However, blood in the urine should never be ignored. Your doctor can evaluate you to identify the cause of the bleeding and treat it, if necessary.
There are two types of hematuria:
- Gross hematuria - the blood can be viewed by the naked eye. The urine may appear pinkish, brownish or bright red.
- Microscopic hematuria - the urine is clear, yet blood cells can be seen when urine is examined under a microscope or tested in a lab.
Gross and microscopic hematuria can have the same cause. Neither one is necessarily more serious than the other. Symptoms you may experience with either type of hematuria include: pain, pressure or burning when you urinate; abdominal pain or back pain. On the other hand, you may not notice any symptoms. Regardless of how much blood is present in the urine, the cause of the bleeding needs to be identified.
Hematuria can occur in almost anyone, including children and teens, and can be caused by the following:
- Bladder or kidney stone
- Enlarged prostate
- Inherited disorders (family history)
- Kidney disease
- Kidney infections
- Kidney injury
- Strenuous exercise
- Urinary tract infections