What do they test for, and what does it mean if they’re higher than normal?
- Protein – If elevated levels of protein are found in your urine, it could be a sign of a Urinary Tract Infection ( UTI ), Kidney Infection, or if later in pregnancy, it could be a sign of developing Pre-Eclampsia. If your blood pressure is normal when the elevated protein is noted, then your urine sample will be sent to the lab to test for a UTI.
- Sugar – If elevated levels of sugar are found in your urine, it usually means that you had a meal or drink prior to your appointment that contained a higher content of sugar. If elevated levels are found within several tests, it will be recommended to take a Glucose Tolerance Test ( GTT ), where they see how well your body is breaking down and processing sugars. This is the test that diagnosis Gestational Diabetes.
- Ketones – If elevated levels of ketones are found in your urine, it means that your body is beginning to break down stored or ingested fat for energy. This is usually a sign that you are not getting enough carbohydrates in your diet, and can also be a sign of dehydration. This is especially seen in women with severe morning sickness, or Hyperemesis.
- Blood Cells or Bacteria – If elevated levels of blood cells or bacteria is found in your urine, this can also be a sign of a UTI. If the dipstick shows that you have nitrites or enzymes that indicate bacteria or blood cells, a urine sample will be sent to the lab to test for a UTI.
24 Hour Protein Urine Test
If Pre-Eclampsia due to high or repeated levels of protein in the urine is suspected, a 24 hour urine sample may be ordered.