What is a high level of protein in urine?

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby missgamecock » Thu Dec 24, 2009 08:23 am

I had +4 on a dip in the office with Kirsten. My 24 hr was 5250mg. Which is defined as severe pe.

With Cate, I was dipping 1+ to 2+ in the office and it was 267 at my last 24 hour a week before she was born. They were going to have me do another 24 hr on that last appt with my ob, he nixed it and said no point, they were taking her if teh amnio was positive. If it wasn't positive for lung maturity, it would have been another 24 hr and blood work every 2 days till I either got a positive amnio or it became an emergency delivery.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby trish » Thu Dec 24, 2009 00:00 am

Mooshell: Welcome! Protein levels can go up and down. Was the 161 from your last 24 hour? That is pretty close to normal (anything 150 or below). If you are dipping a 4+ today I'm glad you're doing another 24 hour test. How many weeks are you? How's your BP?

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby mooshell » Wed Dec 23, 2009 11:13 pm

I'm pretty confused after reading this post...

My last prenatal visit, last week, I was told I had 2+ protein in my urine. I took a 24 hour urine sample, and I guess the results were okay.

Today my doctor told me my protein was at 161, but he said they were getting a 4+ reading on my sample. I am on, yet another, 24 hour urine sample.

I'm confused because the 161 and the 4+ seem to be conflicting.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby brin » Sat Dec 19, 2009 10:57 am

I just saw a nephrologist to rule out underlying kidney issues and she told me that dipsticks in the OB's office are useful in identifying when they should be concerned but that they are not something she'd consider diagnostic. She said that they do not measure concentration which can heavily affect the protein # (ie: very concentrated urine will usually get a higher # then diluted, even if the diluted is actually higher in protein). The best use in her opinion is to determine who needs to do the 24 hour urine. Now that said, +4 is pretty high no matter what!

Im glad your son is doing well!

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby jamie w » Fri Dec 18, 2009 11:50 pm

I was having negative dips but had 1000mg on a 24 hr.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby rebecca2 » Fri Dec 18, 2009 06:59 pm

Welcome to the boards Jamie. I didn't have any vision problems, swelling, etc. It was just that crazy BP & protein. I also wanted to say while in the hospital I was dipping some trace and +1, but my 24 hr urine came back around 1000. It varies so much based on hydration.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby Guest » Fri Dec 18, 2009 06:59 pm

I love the name Emerson! What a scary experience, but that staph infection was certainly a blessing. I'm so glad your son is doing well today!

As for the dip tests.... I never had more than "trace" last pregnancy on dip tests, but my 24-hour was 500 (and more). I have absolutely no idea why this is. I'm nervous for my next 24-hour test because I recently got a +1 dip. So, anyway, I say all of this to agree with Trish that the correlation between dip test and reality (24 hour test) is very very poor.

snpdrgn - that website you found said that false positives are possible due to highly alkaline urine. I wonder if false negatives can happen with very acidic urine. I tend to have low pH urine. I don't know... just a thought.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby trish » Fri Dec 18, 2009 06:39 pm

Never thought I'd say thank goodness for a staph infection!! How scary that his heart stopped but how wonderful that he is doing so well now!! My 3rd DD is almost 2 and was nearly full term but she is tiny. 21-22 lbs & about 31 inches, fitting comfortably in most 12 month clothes. She was quite a surprise but I am so thankful for her. :)

This forum is such a wonderful source of information & support. I hope you stick around while you consider TTC. :) Being around people who "get" how stressful pregnancy can be is so comforting.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby snpdrgn » Fri Dec 18, 2009 06:36 pm

I found this online:

Qualitative Methods
The dipstick method (e.g., Albustix, Multistix) provides an estimate of urinary protein concentration and is widely used in both physician offices and clinical laboratories. Proteins in solution cause a change in the color of a reagent strip impregnated with tetrabromophenol blue. Because tetrabromophenol is a pH indicator, the dipstick is buffered to prevent the influence of normal variations in urine pH on color change. False-positive results can be obtained when the urine is alkaline (pH greater than 7) or when it contains heavy mucus, blood, pus, semen or vaginal secretions. The strips react preferentially with albumin and are relatively insensitive to other proteins such as gamma globulins. The amount of protein in the urine is assessed as 1+ (30 mg per dL), 2+ (100 mg per dL), 3+ (300 mg per dL) or 4+ (1,000 mg per dL).

So I definitely was wrong... I know that some tests like the one my nephrologist uses caps off at 3+ (it doesnt have a 4+ option) so that means that if you are a 3+ you are at least 300 or possibly way more (as far as my kidney doctor is concerned not necessarily the main standard).

To say that the dipstick is accurate isnt always correct either because dehydration and some other issues can affect protein count (but not usually by THAT much) so Trish is right in that its not great for diagnostic but at least gives you an idea if there is problems.

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Re : What is a high level of protein in urine?

Postby kamden80 » Fri Dec 18, 2009 06:26 pm

Thank you both! :)

Trish, the short version of the very, very long story is that 14 hours after going to the ER because my doctor suspected pre-e, Em's heart stopped and they had to do the c-section. An ambulance was actually on their way to transfer me to a different hospital because at the time, mine did not have a Level III NICU.

I actually had no other symptoms, besides outrageous bp and proteinuria. I did have a staph infection (unrelated to the pre-e) in my finger so I felt crappy from that, but no swelling, vision loss or any of the other typical pre-e indicators. If I hadn't gone to the doctor for my finger, I likely would have had ecclempsia at home because I would have never known my bp was so high. Very scary, I'm so thankful for that staph infection! :)

And Em and I doing GREAT! He is a healthy, happy, HUGE 25 month old! My husband and are are in the beginning stages of thinking to TTC so I will be around here a lot! To say I am terrified is basically the understatement of the year.

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