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At your local Pearn's Pharmacy we can offer advice on most general health matters. You can also use our Health Encyclopaedia to provide you with the tools and links you need to pinpoint symptoms and get a full explanation of a suspected condition.
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Finding blood in your urine can be very frightening and must be investigated by a doctor, but it's rarely a sign of anything life-threatening.
If you notice bright red blood in your urine, or if your urine has turned reddish or brownish because it has red blood cells in it, call your GP.
Sometimes, urine may contain only a small amount of blood that is not visible to the naked eye, and only becomes apparent in a laboratory when a urine test for something else is being done. This will still need to be investigated by your doctor, as healthy urine should not contain any detectable amounts of blood.
The medical name for blood in the urine is haematuria.
The blood will have come from somewhere within the urinary tract – the kidneys, bladder or tubes through which urine passes. It is often the result of a urinary tract infection such as cystitis (see below).
This page outlines the most common reasons for blood in the urine, to give you an idea of what may be causing the problem. However, this guide should not be used to self-diagnose your condition and it's important you see your GP for a proper diagnosis of the cause.
Is there definitely blood in the urine?
Before you read on, it is worth considering whether you have recently eaten beetroot, as this can colour the urine pink and cause unnecessary alarm. Also, some medicines, such as the antibiotic nitrofurantoin, can turn the urine brown or red.
Check that the blood is actually coming from your urine, and not your vagina (if you're a woman) or back passage.
Common causes of blood in the urine
You can read more about these conditions by clicking on the above links.
Do I need to see a specialist?
Your GP should refer you urgently to a specialist if:
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