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Diabetes

Sugar in urine

07/28/2008

Question:

My husband blood glucose was 397. He was given an urine test that showed sugar in his urine. He has since started taking in meds like they were ordered. He is eating properly and counting carbs. His blood glucose when he went to the doctor was 105. That was before eating. My question is how long will his urine test to sugar?

Answer:

The urine test for sugar should only be abnormal from sugar itself if the blood sugar is above a certain minimum level beyond which the kidney fails to hold onto sugar - so the urine sugar should be clear if the sugar remains below that value all the time.  However, that does depend on when you test the blood sugar:  the blood sugar could be down some times of day, especially before meals and then reach a higher level after meals, resulting in "spilling" sugar into the urine.  If he only tests when the blood sugar is at the low point of the day, then the blood sugar may appear normal and yet there would still be sugar in the urine.  If the sugar at the peak after meals (generally 2-3 hours after a meal) is less than 180, it is much less likely that sugar will be evident on the urine test.

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Response by:

Robert M Cohen, MD Robert M Cohen, MD
Professor of Clinical Medicine
College of Medicine
University of Cincinnati