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Kidney Diseases

Protein in Urine and High Blood Pressure

07/16/2009

Question:

My GFR is listed as >60. (Do I need an actual number?) I am a female, age 56. And I have cloudy urine sometimes with bubbles. I urinate a LOT at night, a dark color. I wake up several times. Is that good or bad? I also have a Protein Ur 24hr abnormal test of <0.16 gm/24 hr. Does any of this mean kidney disease?

My doctor will not explain anything to me. I even had to BEG for my test results. And I have follow up urine tests next week for my 24 hour urine. Does a GFR of >60 and a Protein Ur 24hr abnormal test of <0.16 gm/24 hr in my urine sound like the beginnings of kidney disease? I also have swollen ankles and high blood pressure, 156/92, and the doctor does nothing to treat this. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Answer:

Your results do not necessarily mean that you have kidney disease.  GFR >60 (which is a standard way of reporting) simply means that you have either no kidney disease, or very mild disease.  The protein result of <0.16 gm/24 hr, if you have written it correctly, is actually normal -- "<" means "less than," and less than 0.16 gm per 24 hrs is a normal result. 

On the other hand, a cloudy urine may indicate infection, bubbles in the urine sometimes does mean protein, and swollen ankles may be a sign of either heart or kidney problems (though not necessarily).  Also, if your blood pressure is consistently in the range of 150/90, it should be treated.  You should feel free to change doctors or to visit another doctor for a second opinion if you think that your doctor is not giving you enough information, because you are making very good observations and asking excellent questions that deserve thoughtful answers. 

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Response by:

Mildred   Lam, MD Mildred Lam, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University