Trace of protein in urine


I have had protein in my urin for around 1 yr, and the result is alway recorded as trace of protein (small amount) but finding the cause is driving me crazy,

Just can't pinpoint what's the cause I only have 1 kidney the other is small and not really working (likely from birth I'm told)

Tried stopping eating certain things and changed my bottled water to another brand but to no avail,

During urinating The toilette water is usually a bit bubbly but some times it's completely normal with no bubbles

My specialist says we may opt for a biopsy but I'm not so sure I want that with only having the one working kidney

I'm 37 yrs old gfr 55

Any ideas or things to try/ask my specialist to try and find out what's causing the protein in urine, Hejust seems to only want to monitor me

I also have gout if that means anything but no gout symptoms

9 Replies

  • My sister had protein in urin for a while but went away when she started dieting and eating healthy,

    My niece also has it but hers is due to larger than normal perforations in the kidney and allows protein in to the urin

  • Stevo, I guess your specialist is of the opinion that it is nothing to worry about as long as your eGFR is remaining stable long-term at 55 and you haven't got any other symptoms, and the protein levels remain at "trace" amounts.

    Is it possible or you to be referred to a renal dietitian to see whether it would help to reduce protein in the diet? Only a thought - I'm no expert!

    I do know what a worry this is especially when you have only one working kidney. Snap! I, too, have only one kidney, with the other one apparently not working from birth and being removed when I was 12. I can also understand your concern about having a biopsy with just one kidney.

    Perhaps someone will join in with more experience of dealing with protein in urine but I think you need to discuss this further with your specialist and get some expert answers from him. Good luck.

  • Thanks for the reply Celtic

    Ah you have only 1 kidney also, honestly I would have never known I only had one kidney if it were not for a routine Yearly work medical examination flagging up protein in my urine,it was quite a shock but then I thought well iv always been like this so I guess not to worry,

    Docs said judging by the size of my other kidney compensating for the little one it must have been something that happend in the womb or very early in life,

    I'm assuming yours is also compensating in size

    Have you ever had protein in your urine? Docs said it could be because only one kidney is doing all the work

  • Yes, Stevo, my sole kidney has done the work of two all my life. I am now of the older generation and no problem until about 10 years ago when I was diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3, probably caused either by Ibuprofen or undiagnosed, therefore untreated, inflammation coursing through my body. At that time, the eGFR was 54 - unfortunately it is gradually declining, now at around 39-41, possibly due to difficult-to-treat high blood pressure.

    As far as I am aware, I haven't had a protein problem (hope I don't regret saying that!) - you must ask the experts. However, if it were me, I would avoid medication even if it were available as so many meds can adversely affect the kidneys.

  • That's pretty good I'd say only losing around 15 gfr over 10yrs

    What's your age if you don't mind me asking? and did you make any changes to your lifestyle or diet?

    but in all honesty people lose kidney function through normal ageing any ways around 1 gfr per yr

    What was your bp by the way?

  • I'm 74 but still a youngster in my head! And very busy!

    I have always eaten healthily, these days mostly organic to avoid too many pesticides - expensive but worth it. Never added salt to anything. Rarely have alcohol.

    Yes kidney function can decline with age - in fact, the Government declared about 10 years ago that the eGFR test should be carried out on everyone having routine blood tests to try and ascertain whether declining kidney function was a disease process or an ageing process. When I was first labelled with CKD3, I told the renal consultant at the time that I thought it was an odd title as it didn't appear to be a disease as such. He agreed saying that the name was adopted in the States and we had to live with it!

    My BP at its highest has been 210 systolic - to date, I have been tried on 7 or 8 different pill trying to find one that does the job but doesn't cause too many unbearable side effects - two of the pills actually caused a very sudden and rapid decline in kidney function of around 9 points in a few weeks. Luckily, most of the points were recovered on stopping the offending pills.

  • I wonder that having only 1 kidney that the "numbers" should be read and applied differently by the docs I mean how can they put you in stage 3ckd based on single kidney readings, if you compared it to 2 kidneys then ther must be a difference,

    It's like we're all rated on the same scale regardless if we have 1 or 2 kidneys

    You say you currently have around 40 egfr but for a single kidney isn't that very good?

    The best gfr in the world is 120 gfr from 2 working kidneys so in my opinion if you only have 1 kidney then half that number right away to 60gfr

    Pull 20 gfr off that for your age and it sounds about right to me

  • No, Stevo, unfortunately it's not as simple as the eGFR being accepted as normal if it was halved in the case of having only one kidney. I got in touch with a Lab a few years ago and the technician agreed that someone with one kidney might be expected to have a slightly lower eGFR, but not by half. Also my, now retired, GP has a son in his 20s/30s who had a kidney removed as a child and he said he has the same normal function of someone with two. However, my rheumatologist thought that it was unfair and "rubbish" to compare this with me who was much older. I think the jury is out and not much is known about handling those with one kidney, particularly when it comes to medication, for instance trials carried out on the safety of meds before they come onto the market are only carried out on those with two kidneys - in other words healthy people.

    You might get more answers if you contact people like the National Kidney Federation, or speak to the technicians at your local hospital Lab who analyse and report on our blood tests.

  • Also wondering is there any medication available to help with protein in urine?

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