Pyuria is a condition referring to having white blood cells, or pus cells, in the urine. Women are at a greater risk for pyuria than men.
Pyuria, by far, is the most common cause of white blood cells in the urine is due to an infection of the urinary system. This is often referred to as a UTI. It usually occurs in the bladder, but may also be of the kidney.
Bacterial infections are the number one cause of inflammation and are readily found or are able to be cultured from the urine. Certain other bacterial organisms which are uncommon and either require special culturing methods or are unable to be cultured may also infect the urine.
Some of these are:
- anaerobic bacteria (which grow better with little or no oxygen)
- fungal infections
as well as certain viral infections such as:
- herpes simplex
- human papilloma virus (condyloma /warts)
Although infection accounts for pus cells in the urine 98-99% of the time, it is not the only reason. The body typically responds to an irritation of the tissues responding to inflammation. This inflammatory response is then manifested by a slight swelling of the tissues, an increase in the blood flow to the area, and an infiltration of white blood cells to help combat the irritation. So any cause of inflammation in the urinary system may increase the white blood cell numbers in the urine.
Testing and Treating Pyuria
Testing and treating pyuria is simple and easy, if you do it correctly. All our Board-Certified Urologists, as well as our nurse practitioners, have a better understanding of issues like pyuria as they specialize in conditions such as these. Not all doctors do. Therefore, it is important to be tested and treated by a Board-Certified urologist.
We stress to patients that our tests are more accurate and look for and find more than the more common tests others use. And, since we have our own lab right on campus, you get your results quicker than most. Which means we can treat you the right way quicker than most. Plus, with 9 different locations, we can even get you in faster.
Other rare reasons for pyuria
While infection accounts for most every case of pyuria, there are other rare instances where it is caused by something else. Some inflammatory lesions of the kidney such as: lupus nephritis, polyarteritis nodosa, analgesic nephropathy, glomerulonephritis, lead nephropathy and secondary syphilis may also cause pyuria.
Pyuria can also be caused by parasites like Trichomona vaginalis, Schistosoma haematobium, Giardia lamblia. Entamoeba histolytica may also be seen in the urine with pyuria.
Tumors or cancers of the bladder or kidney often have an area of inflammation surrounding the tumor and thus may have an increased number of white cells in the urine. Stones of the kidney, ureter or bladder typically have blood in the urine, but occasionally will have more white blood cells if they are irritating enough to the urinary system. All tissues heal with an inflammatory response and thus patients with trauma or who have had surgery on the urinary system will have pyuria until they are healed.
Interstitial cystitis is an inflammatory syndrome of the bladder, which may not only have pyuria, but also symptoms fairly typical of the more common bladder infection.
Other problems which need to be considered are Reiter’s syndrome, contamination from the vagina, retroperitoneal fibrosis and chemicals such as soap or medication in the urethra or bladder.
Again, it is important to note infection accounts for pus cells in the urine 98-99% of the time. However, patients who do not respond appropriately to a course of antibiotics or who have persistent pyuria need to be evaluated for the less common causes. Occasionally, despite a thorough search for other causes, no cause is found and we call this idiopathic pyuria, which means we do not know why.
Pyuria Tests at AUS are in Southside Chicago and Northwest Indiana.
A quick Pyuria test can be performed quickly at any of our AUS offices. They are conveniently located in Chicago Ridge, Evergreen Park, Homewood, Orland Park and Palos Hills.
Advanced urology procedures, like Pyuria tests, are done best at AUS.
Patients from Morris, Joliet and New Lenox have learned the most advanced urology procedures, like Pyuria tests, are done at AUS.
Never a long drive for accurate Pyuria tests and results.
Patients don’t have to travel more than a few minutes for a Pyuria test if they are coming from Alsip, Bedford Park, Blue Island, Bridgeview, Burbank, Calumet Park, Chicago Heights, Country Club Hills, Crestwood, Englewood, Glenwood, Harvey, Hickory Hills, Homer Glen, Matteson, Midlothian, Mokena, Oak Lawn, Oak Forest, Olympia Fields, Orland Hills, Park Forest, Roseland, South side, South Holland and Tinley Park. AUS is just up the road from Peotone, Bourbonnais and Kankakee.
Pyuria Tests are done by the best Board-Certified Urologists.
Patients having Pyuria Tests done at AUS come from Bolingbrook, Brighten Park, Burnham, Burr Ridge, Calumet City, Countryside, Crystal Lawns, Crest Hill, Darien, Dolton, Fairmont, Frankfort, Gage Park, Gillets, Hammond, Hinsdale, Hyde Park, Ingalls Park, Lansing, Lynwood, La Grange, Lemont, Lockport, Munster, Palisades, Richton Park, Riverdale, Romeoville, Sauk Village, South Shore, South Chicago, Westmont, Whiting, Willowbrook and Woodridge.