Keeping Your Child’s Kidneys Healthy: Urine Screening for Microalbumin
Why is urine screening done?
- It tests for small amounts of protein in the urine. This is called microalbumin.
- Microalbumin in the urine can be an early sign of kidney damage.
- Kidney damage is a serious complication of diabetes.
- If caught early, kidney damage can be treated and sometimes reversed.
- All people with diabetes are at risk for microalbumin in the urine.
When is urine screening done?
What is a normal urine screening test?
- A very small amount of protein in the urine is normal. This is called a negative test.
- Sometimes larger amounts of protein are found in the urine even when there is no kidney problem. This is called a “false positive” test.
- A false positive test can happen when your child:
- Has a fever or urinary tract infection.
- Has exercised a lot before the urine test.
- For girls, the urine test was done during menstruation.
What if the screening test is positive?
- More urine tests will need to be done.
- The next test is done on the first urine of the morning. This test may be done up to three times.
- If needed, your diabetes provider will talk to you about going to a kidney doctor (nephrologist) for further evaluation.
If you have any questions, please call us.
Reviewed by: CHOP Diabetes Center for Children
Date: May 2010