|MadSci Network: Medicine|
Hi Josh Simple answer is blood or beetroot! Firstly, it's important to know whether the red in urine is blood or red colouring, and it's very easy to check this using a dipstick, (a small strip the tip of which is impregnated with certain chemicals which change colour if haemoglobin is detected) - normally urine should not contain any red blood cells. If no haemoglobin is detected, the usual culprit is beetroot, which contains a naturally occuring red dye excreted via the kidneys. Other dyes found in foods or certain medicines can turn urine green or blue. If haemoglobin is detected, then this signifies some problem with the urinary system - the blood might be coming from the kidneys, the ureters, the bladder or the urethra - and further investigations are needed to establish the cause, which may vary from something fairly simple, which is most common, such as an infection, to other more serious causes. Either way, blood in the urine should always be investigated by a doctor. Best wishes Doc C-P
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