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Due in part to the development of multiple reagent strips (dipstix) for urinalysis, more laboratory tests are now performed each year on urine than on any other body fluid. A typical urinalysis includes tests for glucose, protein, pH, ketone bodies, bilirubin, occult (unseen) blood, urobilinogen, and specific gravity and microscopic examination of urinary sediment. Many common abnormalities can be recognized by urine studies. Urine tests are the method of choice to monitor the treatment of diabetes.


Lesson 1 Collecting, Preserving, and Examining Urine Samples

Section 1. Collecting and Preserving Specimens
Section 2. Macroscopic and Physical Examination of Urine
Exercises for Lesson 1

Lesson 2 Chemical Measures

Section 1. Chemical Measures
Exercises for Lesson 2

Lesson 3 Microscopic Examination of Urinary Sediment

Section 1. Preparation and Illumination
Section 2. Microscopic Examination of Organized Sediment
Section 3. Microscopic Examination of Unorganized Sediment
Section 4. Microscopic Examination of Stained Urinary Sediment
Exercises for Lesson 3


Urine is an excretion product, but it is usually clean and sterile. Its chief components are urea, sodium chloride, and water. The stench of stale urine is largely due to the decomposition of urea to ammonia by bacteria. The odor of fresh urine is not unpleasant to most persons. Urine is not a significant source of infection. The disagreeable characteristics arising from decomposition can usually be avoided.

David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: June 06, 2015