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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 06-05-2010, 03:41 PM
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"Foam" vs. "Bubbles" in Urine... an explanation

Recently there were a couple threads about foam in urine and their concern. I'm glad to see people being "health conscious" and not just saying "Well, that's the price you gotta pay for being BIG," duhduhduh

Anyhow, the usual (and appropriate) comment is, "Go see your doctor, you might be spilling proteins."

Two quick thoughts
1) There is a difference between "foam" and "bubbles" in your urine... what I mean is, many times a person will produce "bubbles" simply b/c of the distance traveled to the water and the disruption it occurs. These bubbles will typically "pop" or dissolve someone quickly. "Foam" on the other hand is d/t the protein/albumin in the urine and the foam will usually "sit" there on the water for awhile.

2) You can do a quick check at home to see if you have protein in your urine.

Our medical urine test strips (urine dip sticks) will analyze and check your urine for 10 different parameters - from glucose, ketones to leucocytes , pH, specific gravity etc.

If you test positive, then of course, go see your doc, but if negative, you are OK and can save yourself some time and $$

Edit: Another benefit of these strips... you can find out if your dehydrated or not by measuring your specific gravity. If your urine too concentrated it will be high (it's not a perfect measure though as you may also have a high solute level as well <maybe too much sodium, etc.>). Waiting to drink when your thirsty is actually not wise as you are already about 5% dehydrated, which may not sound like alot, but it can significantly affect your physical performance.

Last edited by myosin; 06-05-2010 at 04:22 PM.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 06-06-2010, 06:45 AM
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This is one of those topics that creates unnecessary apprehension because the discussion does not provide a clear context for comparison. When you pee directly into a toilet bowl and you are 6' tall - well hydrated - and doing 200mg of protein a day, you should see large bubbles and some smaller ones mixed in.

If there is anyone on this board who urinates into the toilet in that fashion and makes no bubbles whatsoever, it is a mystery. The quality of the water, the ph, amount of chlorine, well or city, hard or soft - may be a contributing factor.

Foam generally appears as a large number of very small bubbles. They would not generally pop quickly like cold champagne or like the large bubbles.

A test that I think will help, is to pee into the toilet but not hit the water directly. If you pee on the porcelain just outside the waters edge and see no bubbles, you are probably good to go. Meaning the mechanical action of the pee hitting the water creates bubbles irrespective of the amount of protein you have in your urine.

If you pee on the porcelain and you see foam develop on the surface of the water, you may have an issue.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Old 06-06-2010, 08:35 AM
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thanks for posting this.....im havin issues with some foamy/bubbly urine at the moment......i have large bubbles that pop quickly......also when peeing on the porcelin i have no bubbles.....just to be safe im going to get bloodwork done next week......
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  #4 (permalink)  
Old 06-06-2010, 08:46 AM
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Good point

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cosmicdrifter View Post
This is one of those topics that creates unnecessary apprehension because the discussion does not provide a clear context for comparison. When you pee directly into a toilet bowl and you are 6' tall - well hydrated - and doing 200mg of protein a day, you should see large bubbles and some smaller ones mixed in.

If there is anyone on this board who urinates into the toilet in that fashion and makes no bubbles whatsoever, it is a mystery. The quality of the water, the ph, amount of chlorine, well or city, hard or soft - may be a contributing factor.

Foam generally appears as a large number of very small bubbles. They would not generally pop quickly like cold champagne or like the large bubbles.

A test that I think will help, is to pee into the toilet but not hit the water directly. If you pee on the porcelain just outside the waters edge and see no bubbles, you are probably good to go. Meaning the mechanical action of the pee hitting the water creates bubbles irrespective of the amount of protein you have in your urine.

If you pee on the porcelain and you see foam develop on the surface of the water, you may have an issue.
very good point C... If u read the beginning of my post the reason I posted this is actually because there is already alot of concern about this issue... So it is to address those concerns.

Peeing alongside the bowl sounds like a good idea on paper, but one can do this, not produce foam, and STILL have proteins... I've seen it in the ICU many times.

Thanks for the input.
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  #5 (permalink)  
Old 06-06-2010, 08:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myosin View Post
very good point C... If u read the beginning of my post the reason I posted this is actually because there is already alot of concern about this issue... So it is to address those concerns.

Peeing alongside the bowl sounds like a good idea on paper, but one can do this, not produce foam, and STILL have proteins... I've seen it in the ICU many times.

Thanks for the input.
You can probably tell us how many BB you've seen in ICU with acute kidney failure? Thanks for your "more informed" perspective. That's why I have an appointment tomorrow to have a urinalysis.

I loved working in a hospital. When I was in graduate school, I worked nights at Northside Hospital in Atlanta - in the mental health wing. Those wonderful nights interviewing the drug-overdosed, suicidal, and the neurotic house wives in ER who were having an "episode."

I worked in several psychiatric hospitals; the camaraderie was strong - the friendships memorable. I married a nurse; there used to be some real lookers in the nursing field.
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  #6 (permalink)  
Old 06-07-2010, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cosmicdrifter View Post
This is one of those topics that creates unnecessary apprehension because the discussion does not provide a clear context for comparison. When you pee directly into a toilet bowl and you are 6' tall - well hydrated - and doing 200mg of protein a day, you should see large bubbles and some smaller ones mixed in.

If there is anyone on this board who urinates into the toilet in that fashion and makes no bubbles whatsoever, it is a mystery. The quality of the water, the ph, amount of chlorine, well or city, hard or soft - may be a contributing factor.

Foam generally appears as a large number of very small bubbles. They would not generally pop quickly like cold champagne or like the large bubbles.

A test that I think will help, is to pee into the toilet but not hit the water directly. If you pee on the porcelain just outside the waters edge and see no bubbles, you are probably good to go. Meaning the mechanical action of the pee hitting the water creates bubbles irrespective of the amount of protein you have in your urine.

If you pee on the porcelain and you see foam develop on the surface of the water, you may have an issue.
If i do this test the way you described, should one have ABSOLUTELY no foam, whatsoever?
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Old 06-07-2010, 07:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by juicin View Post
If i do this test the way you described, should one have ABSOLUTELY no foam, whatsoever?
Read my reply to C.
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  #8 (permalink)  
Old 06-08-2010, 02:16 PM
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theres corn in my urine
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  #9 (permalink)  
Old 06-08-2010, 03:39 PM
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Glad to have a person in the medical field posting, Myosin.

Thanks.
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Old 06-08-2010, 05:40 PM
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if you test pos for protein your saying? what can protein in urine be an indication of?
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  #11 (permalink)  
Old 06-09-2010, 12:38 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myosin View Post
Read my reply to C.
i guess i should have rephrazed my question:

After you said that one can still have protein in the urine if he/she does not produce foam, it got me thinking that.....
If one DOES produce foam is it an absolute indicator that there is protein in the urine?

I was thinking along the lines of, "if there is foam, ok im screwed" but if theres NO foam "ok i may or may not be in trouble, only way to know is to get a test done."


Sorry if i sound confusing i'm having a hard time wording what im trying to say
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Old 06-09-2010, 04:31 PM
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Got it...

Quote:
Originally Posted by juicin View Post
i guess i should have rephrazed my question:

After you said that one can still have protein in the urine if he/she does not produce foam, it got me thinking that.....
If one DOES produce foam is it an absolute indicator that there is protein in the urine?

I was thinking along the lines of, "if there is foam, ok im screwed" but if theres NO foam "ok i may or may not be in trouble, only way to know is to get a test done."


Sorry if i sound confusing i'm having a hard time wording what im trying to say
haha, n/p J... maybe it's me

Let me "bullet" this for ease of flow...
1) If foam in toilet when urinating STANDING, check yourself on a urine dipstick, COULD be protein in urine.

2) If NO FOAM, WHEN STANDING... probably "a-ok"... it's the combination of the force, distance, velocity and solute of the urine hitting the water that causes the foam

3) If no foam in toilet when urinating SITTING, who the heck knows, you won't until you do a urine dip... when an ICU patient has a foley catheter, they don't have foam in their collection chamber... there's no "disruption" of surface water. We won't know until we do our "Q-shift" urine dip.
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  #13 (permalink)  
Old 06-10-2010, 07:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by myosin View Post
haha, n/p J... maybe it's me

Let me "bullet" this for ease of flow...
1) If foam in toilet when urinating STANDING, check yourself on a urine dipstick, COULD be protein in urine.

2) If NO FOAM, WHEN STANDING... probably "a-ok"... it's the combination of the force, distance, velocity and solute of the urine hitting the water that causes the foam

3) If no foam in toilet when urinating SITTING, who the heck knows, you won't until you do a urine dip... when an ICU patient has a foley catheter, they don't have foam in their collection chamber... there's no "disruption" of surface water. We won't know until we do our "Q-shift" urine dip.
ha ha... ease of flow

thanks for clearin that up bro
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  #14 (permalink)  
Old 07-11-2010, 02:28 AM
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Why use a toilet then? It is just making things difficult with all the velocity and angle and stuff. Do a piss test outside the office on the soil. If people ask you what you’re up to, tell them it is your daily urine test for protein.
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Old 07-11-2010, 05:56 AM
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Bro, if you feel that strong about it, go with first instinct and get yourself check out. There are so many different variables for foam in your pee.
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