Microalbumin Urine Test
How It Feels
There is no discomfort while collecting a
There is no chance of problems while collecting a
A microalbumin test checks urine for the
presence of a protein called
albumin. Microalbuminuria is most often caused by
kidney damage from
The normal values listed here-called a reference range-are just a guide. These ranges vary from lab to lab, and your lab may have a different range for what’s normal. Your lab report should contain the range your lab uses. Also, your doctor will evaluate your results based on your health and other factors. This means that a value that falls outside the normal values listed here may still be normal for you or your lab.
Normal results may vary depending on:
- The laboratory.
- The type (random
versus timed) of urine sample collected.
- The time of day of the
- Whether you are male or female.
- Whether you are
on bed rest or able to move about normally.
You may need more than
one test to find out how well your kidneys are working.
- If your results are higher than normal, your doctor may check
your urine more often to watch for kidney damage.
- If you have 2 or 3 high results in a 3- to 6-month period and
you have diabetes, your doctor may find kidney damage (diabetic nephropathy). Even though diabetes is the most common reason for high
results, there are many other kidney problems that can cause high
Pregnant women with diabetes may have their urine checked
to watch for high amounts of albumin.
What Affects the Test
Reasons you may not be able to
have the test or why the results may not be helpful include:
What To Think About
- The American Diabetes Association recommends a
microalbumin urine test for people with:
- Type 2 diabetes: First at diagnosis, and then yearly for diabetic
- Type 1 diabetes: Yearly screening for diabetic
nephropathy should begin 5 years after diagnosis.
- If a microalbumin urine test shows that kidney
damage may be present, a test to check
creatinine levels may be done. A blood test for
creatinine is done along with a 24-hour creatinine clearance urine test to
check kidney function. For more information, see the topic
Creatinine and Creatinine Clearance.
less precise test, the urine dipstick test, can be used to check for
microalbuminuria in a single sample of urine. But the dipstick test does not
accurately detect microalbuminuria and is not recommended in place of a
microalbumin urine test.