What might blood in the urine indicate?

Written by: Mr Rajiv Pillai
Published: | Updated: 20/01/2023
Edited by: Conor Lynch

In this article below, revered consultant urologist, Mr Rajiv Pillai, outlines what might be the leading causes of blood in the urine, and details how the cause of blood in the urine is diagnosed.

What might blood in the urine indicate?

Blood in the urine can be quite a scary symptom to experience, especially seeing blood at the end of the bowl after you pass urine. It is a symptom that needs to be investigated promptly.


If you see blood in the urine, there can be up to a one in five chance of an underlying tumor or cancer, be it in the kidneys, prostate, bladder, or somewhere in the urinary tract. Cancer is not the only possible diagnosis, but there could be infection or stones or indeed another underlying condition.


How is the cause of blood in the urine typically detected?

It is important to get tested by a urologist promptly if you notice blood in the urine. Your GP will normally make an urgent cancer pathway referral. Your urologist will take a prompt history and look at any risk factors such as smoking or exposure to dyes, chemicals, or heavy metals, or see if there's any previous history of blood in the urine.


You would then go into having diagnostic tests, for example, a check dipstick in the urine or sending the urine away to check for infection. The two mainstays of investigation are usually a CT scan with contrast (dye) in the form of checking the kidneys and the ureters (pipes) for cancer, and also looking in with a camera into the bladder and the urethra to check if there's any underlying tumor.


If you have noticed blood in your urine, seek medical attention urgently. To book an appointment with Mr Rajiv Pillai, simply head on over to his Top Doctors profile today.

By Mr Rajiv Pillai

Mr Rajiv Pillai is a highly experienced consultant urological surgeon practising at the Oaks Hospital in Colchester. His areas of expertise include urologic oncology, urinary tract stones and infections, prostate cancer, bladder cancer and benign prostate tumours.

In the last four years, Mr Pillai has performed nearly 400 major complex cancer operations of the kidney, bladder and prostate. In addition to cancer treatment, he also specialises in men's health disorders, urinary leakage disorders, kidney stones, impotence, ejaculatory problems, scrotal lumps and foreskin problems.

Mr Pillai's specialist urology training took place in the Eastern Deanery, mainly in Norwich and Cambridge, and received subspecialty training in urological cancer surgery of the kidney, bladder and prostate. He currently specialises in laparoscopic (minimally invasive) surgery which he offers to his patients.

Mr Pillai currently leads several clinical research projects in prostate and bladder cancer at the Colchester General Hospital and is also actively involved in teaching post-graduate urology trainees. In addition, he is currently a tutor at the University of Edinburgh.

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