Protein in the Urine

Updated on November 18, 2008
M.S. asks from Cleveland, TX
14 answers

I seem to be having a rough time with this pregnancy, even though I feel fine, I was wondering if anyone had protein in their urine and if they had to do one of those 24 hour tests where you collect your urine then they send it in to the lab to check for protein. Its suppose to be more accurate than the typical pee in the cup test. Mine came back high and they said to watch for signs of preclamsia (sp?)and I am suppose to be on bed rest. I was wondering if anyone had any experiences with this? I am really concerned.

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answers from Austin on

Have you had issues of high blood pressure with this pregnancy? Tightness in your chest?

Check this link out for info on Pre-eclampsia:

Here's a link to a forum for pre-eclampsia; they might be able to provide you with more information on their experiences:

Pre-eclampsia and HELLPS is a serious complication that can endanger both the mother and the fetus. My bestfriend developed it at 24 weeks and, although she managed to delay having labor induced until her kidneys and liver began to shut down, their son was too young to survive outside the womb.

Please, please trust the advice of your doctor. If they advise to deliver early, its probably because you or the baby (or both) are in danger. And do take it easy, keep your blood pressure down. Try to avoid all triggers of anxiety.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Stationed Overseas on

I had pre-eclampsia with our first pregnancy. Sudden onset at 33 weeks 3 days which ended in a full placental abruption, nearly killed me, and inevitably did take our daughter from us shortly after the birth.

I want you to know that this is a VERY common condition and at your stage in pregnancy you have very little to worry about. Your doctor is aware of the possibility that you are coming down with this condition and you are also well informed knowing what to look for. Bed rest is not something that is needed, although I would certainly limit your activities some and try to get as much rest as you can as with the end of any other pregnancy.

You are so close to your due date that the danger to you and the baby isn't that great. Even if the situation became emergent you have the information you need to know that you have to get to the hospital and your daughter is far enough along in gestation that she is considered a full term baby and you have very little to worry about in reguards to the safety of you and your baby girl.

Try to relax as best you can. Watch for severe headaches, blurriness, excesive dizziness, sudden and/or excessive swelling in your hands, fingers, feet, and ankles. (all signs that your blood pressure is increasing and you may need medical attention) Go to the doctor if you are concerned and if you are really worried talk to the doctor about early induction so as to help prevent the onset of the pre-eclampsia. You and that baby will be just fine. You have ever right and reason to be concerned, however more often than not in these situations mom and baby come out just fine. We were not so lucky with our daughter, but you and your daughter will be just fine!

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answers from Houston on

I had the same problem when I was 33 weeks pregnent. They put me in the hospital to run some advanced test, and because of other health complications, then decided to go ahead and induce. When you go into the doctor every visit, they should have given you a test of urine. This is what they are looking for and if there is too much all of a sudden, then they go to the better test. Preclasia is a condition if not treated, could mean complications for you and your baby. If you still run with high protein in your urine, they may elect to deliver your baby sooner that what is expected. My son was born at 33 weeks, and was very healthy and strong lived little one.

Best of luck!



answers from San Antonio on

I had preclampsia when I gave birth to my daughter. I never had to do the urine testing though because my bp was wierd and would spike only sometimes and protein was never found in my urine until the day before I gave birth to her (they induced me because of it). I understand your concern, it's a scary thing to think about.

Signs of preclampsia would be headache, feeling faint or dizzy, high blood pressure and severe swelling in your ankles and hands. It's important to watch for those signs even if you are feeling ok because your body would not be ok and you'd need to get to a doctor asap.

My advice is to take your doctors advice, get your bedrest and don't stress over it. Reading about it on the internet is only going to scare you and make your bp rise lol so don't do that. As long as you're being watched closely by your doctors and are being careful to take their advice you will be absolutely fine, so will your baby. Get educated about it through your doctors and nurses.

Another thing you can do is do a no salt or sodium diet and up your protein intake. It's VERY hard to find foods so low in sodium but it's not impossible and it will help you. Drink LOTS and LOTS of water and stay off your feet as much as possible. Sleep and rest lying on your left side, it helps to keep bp steady. If you feel faint or headaches, dizzy, anything like that or your hands and ankles begin to swell more than normal call your nurse. It also helps to watch your bp at home if you can too, you can buy a home bp kit or go to a public bp station a few times a week to check it.

I know all this is scary but don't worry, your doctor will take care of you, just follow the instructions they give you. The urine test is only to show how much protein you are giving out in a 24 hour period, if it's too much they'll watch you even closer and give you further instructions, possibly set a date for induction or c-section if needed. ***hugs***



answers from Houston on

Do what the doctor tells you to do. I have had this three times and each time it worsens. Do the bedrest and really do it.



answers from Austin on

Pre-eclampsia is a serious problem but there are things you can do (other than bedrest which has not been shown to help in studies). The very best thing is to be sure you are getting enough protein in your diet. Dr. Tom Brewer who has done tons of research (on 20,000 women) found that if you eat 75+ grams of protein per day, youdo not develop pre-eclampsia. Try monitoring what you are eating for a couple of days to see how much you are getting. Also here is a good website with inforamtion
Best of luck to you,



answers from Houston on

I had sudden onset pre-eclampsia at 30wks. It was so severe that i had to deliver within 48hrs. It is very important to stick to your bedrest orders, refrain from High blood pressure triggers, elevate your feet and watch for swelling in your feet, ankles, hands etc. If you have questions with the amount of swelling call your doctor. It can be a slow and progressive thing or sudden onset. So it is better to be extra cautious.
I had four 24hour urine analysis that all came back perfectly normal and then at 30 weeks i just started spilling massive amounts of protein. So, you never know but if you are at risk for pre-eclampsia it is important to stick to all your appointments and to call your doctor or go to the ER if you feel something is not right. dizzy spells, headache, and swelling are typical signs. Hope all goes well for you and your little one! Blessings.



answers from Houston on

Hi I'm sorry you are dealing with this; I have had preeclampsia twice.

It is good that the docs are running a 24 hour urine test, since it is a more accurate measure of proteinura than a dipstick test. All that is needed for a diagnosis of preeclampsia is two high blood pressure readings at least 6 hours apart and over 300 mg protein in a 24 hour urine collection.

Please keep an eye on your signs and symptoms, preeclampsia can move quickly. Here is a link to the signs and symptoms of preeclampsia:

Don't hesitate to call the doc or go to L&D if you feel off. The average time from diagnosis of preeclampsia to delivery is two weeks, but that includes women who limp along with mild symptoms for weeks and those who quickly worsen in a matter of hours.

I agree with a previous poster not to cut out salt. However I disagree on visiting which espouses the brewer diet. No dietary interventions or supplements have proven efficacious in the prevention of preeclampsia- with the possible exception of a multivitamin containg folic acid. Dr. Brewer's theory of preclampsia is contradicted by current research and the high protein diet he espoused can be harmful for women with preeclampsia (which puts strain on the kidneys) or pre-existing kidney damage (which is a risk factor for preeclampsia).

Let me know if you have any further questions, I know how scary this can be and I'd be glad to help in any way I can.



answers from Houston on


This is my first time on this site so if I do something wrong let me know. I have had your protein issue in the past while pregnant with my daughter;However to understand why my siutaion was very extreme and like noone elses. I will text you that tomorrow if you are interested since my daughter calls.



answers from Houston on

I did have protein in my urine at one point, but never high blood pressure. They just kept an eye on my me and at 34 wks i was sent to a high risk dr due to my age and other factors. This was at utmb. I had high blood pressure that day and they kept me in l&d to continue monitoring. But they were keeping me in the waiting room because they had no beds. I was pretty pissed and felt like my head was going to explode but just assumed it was because i had gone so long without eating and because i was dealing with utmb bs. When i finally blew a gasket with a nurse they paid attention and set me down in the nurses station where i could put up my feet.

Good thing, too, because that put me to the top of the list and i finally got hooked up to all the machines and i was having contractions! It didn't feel like it, i was just in pain. They watched a while, got me a bed, and gave me magnesium and a steroid shot. That was when they finally told me i was delivering in 24 hrs. I made it about 12, and they said they had to deliver. I got to see her for a few minutes, and they took her to nicu. I didn't get to see her for 3 days because i couldn't leave the bed and she couldn't leave nicu. She stayed in the hospital 3 wks.

She is fine and healthy now, thank God i was at UTMB where they had such good neonatal. It took a long time to get my bp down, weeks. They finally let me leave the hopsital after a week, but i had to go in for readings. It was months before it was finally under control.

I am not trying to scare you, just trying to make sure you take this seriously. If they say bedrest, DO IT. They never told me, if they had maybe all of that could have been avoided. At the time, it didn't look like there was a reason to, though. Take it easy and don't push yourself. I never even had the blood pressure until 34 wks, and by then, i was having that baby! Rest up.



answers from San Antonio on

I haven't been there but I always do lots of reading. I'm not sure if it's too late- but I don't think it every is: BEEF UP YOUR PROTEIN! No punn intended :)
You should be getting 80-100grams of protein a day!!!
When your not getting enough protein it seeps into your urine. Also, lots of water is needed.
I hope that helps!
Best wishes and prayers to you!


answers from Waco on

I too had a pretty rough pregnancy. I remember that there were points in my pregnancy where I was told that I had protien in my Urine also. I did the 24 hour collection and everything was okay. Just try to relax, don't overwork yourself, and if the doctor says "mandatory bed rest" just do it! I probably should have been on bedrest, but I was working in a position where I stood all day. I spotted pretty much througout my entire pregnancy and had early contractions at 24, 26,and 32 weeks to where I was in and out of the hospital. I had my son 6 weeks early, although small at 4lbs 8 oz, he was very healthy, he was squirming about,cooing, and breathing on his own (:
Just do your best to take it easy, try not to stress, and like I said, if the doc says bedrest, do it, I know it's not so fun, but better safe than sorry!



answers from Houston on

I developed protein in my urine earlier on in my pregnancy so they monitored me closely and I did several of the 24 hour urine tests. I did not have the swelling or the high blood pressure but I did have the protein. Towards the end of my pregnancy they even had me go to the hospital every week to be hooked to a monitor for the baby to be checked as well as an ultrasound done. My doctor induced me at 37 weeks and I ended up having to have a C-section. After I had her I was only allowed to lay flat on my back for a 24 hour period and was receiving Magnesium to make sure that it did not turn into eclampsia. I did not see my daughter until the next day because she needed IV fluids and more oxygen. She is a very healthy little 2 year old girl now. I read on it when I had it and it happens to young women, older women and first time pregnancies you are young and I am an older mom. I really believe that bed rest is needed, I know it is hard for you with a little boy to watch but try as much as you can. It really can get very serious if not monitored. My blood pressure rose and swelling got bad the week before I had her. Take care of yourself!!




answers from Austin on

I am a senior midwife student. In order to have preeclampsia you need two of these symptoms: protein in the urine, high blood pressure, swelling, severe headaches. Just having protein in the urine is not a sign of preeclampisa. A previous poster said to cut back on salt. This is the WORST thing you could do. Your liver needs the salt to help maintain your increasing blood volume. Cutting out salt can cause you to go into preeclampsia. Visit this website This will tell you how to help yourself not get into a preeclampsia state. Also, why are you on bedrest? If you are not having blood pressure issues there is no reason to be on bed rest unless you are dealing with premature labor.


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