• Crystalluria is defined as  the presence of crystals in the urine. This results from excessive satiety and can lead to kidney problems such as nephrolithiasis, nephrocalcinosis, and sometimes acute or chronic renal dysfunction that can lead to end-stage renal disease.
  • Crystalluria is a common finding on routine urinary sediment examination. Most often, precipitation of calcium oxalate, uric acid, triphosphate, calcium phosphate, amorphous phosphate or urate occurs after transient urine supersaturation, ingestion, or urine temperature and/or pH caused by changes in urine temperature or pH. 
  • However, in a few cases, crystalluria is associated with morbid conditions such as urolithiasis, acute uric acid nephropathy, ethylene glycol poisoning, and hypereosinophilic syndrome. In addition, crystalluria can be caused by drugs such as sulfadiazine, acyclovir, triamterene, pyridoxylates, and primidone, which are influenced by various factors that can factors that can crystallize within the tubular lumen and damage the kidneys.
  •  In all these cases, testing for crystalluria is diagnostic and vital for tracking the course of the disease. However, it requires an appropriate methodological approach. This includes handling freshly voided urine, understanding urine pH, and using contrast phase microscopy with polarizing filters.
  • The presence of crystals in urine is more common than you think. Crystals can be found in the urine of perfectly healthy people as well as those who are sick or are diagnosed with a disease. It can usually be detected during routine urine tests or if your doctor suspects another medical condition. One of the best ways to prevent crystal formation is to drink plenty of water or fluid.


What Causes Crystalluria?

Crystalluria, or crystals in the urine, can be detected by urinalysis. It is not always contagious. The causes usually include dehydration and the use of certain drugs.


What Is Crystalluria Medically?

Crystalluria is medically defined as the presence of crystals in the urine which usually indicates renal irritation.


Which Drug Is Responsible For Producing Crystalluria?

Crystalluria is a known side effect of amoxicillin and has been reported with high-dose therapy.


How Can Crystalluria Be Prevented?

Patients receiving high-dose ciprofloxacin should drink plenty of fluids and avoid alkaline urine in order to prevent crystalluria,


How Do You Remove Crystals From Urine?

Small stones can go away on their own in about 4 to 6 weeks without treatment. Drinking extra water can wash away the stones. Your doctor may also prescribe an alpha-blocker such as doxazosin (Cardura) or tamsulosin (Flomax). These drugs relax the ureters, allowing stones to pass more quickly from the kidneys.


Can UTI Cause Crystals In The Urine?

Crystals found in the urine are usually magnesium ammonium phosphate crystals. These are often described as colorless rectangular prisms. They can be found in healthy urine, but are usually consistent with urinary tract infections (UTIs). Cloudy urine is one of the symptoms of UTI.


Which Drugs Can Cause Crystals In The Urine?

Magnesium trisilicate, ciprofloxacin, sulfas, triamterene, indinavir, ephedrine, alone or in combination with guaifenesin are the drugs that induce calculi via this process.


Does Crystalluria Cause Kidney Stones?

Nephrolithiasis appears to be the result of crystal formation, aggregation, and retention in the kidney in crystalluria. These processes usually have to occur within the short urinary transit time through the kidney being in the order of a few minutes.


Why Are There Crystals In The Urine?

Urine contains various types of chemicals. Under certain circumstances, these chemicals can solidify into salt crystals that are called crystalluria.

These crystals can be found in the urine of a sick person or even a healthy person. These are often caused by a little excess in the quantity of protein or a minor problem like too much vitamin C. Many types of urine crystals are relatively harmless and can be easily removed.

However, in some cases, urine crystals may indicate a more serious condition. Symptoms that indicate a more serious condition are as follows:

Abdominal pain, fever, hematuria, fatigue, and even jaundice.


What Does It Mean To Have Crystals In Your Urine?

Crystallization occurs in urine when there are too many minerals and not enough water in the urine. Small pieces come together to form lumps or masses. These masses can usually be found in a routine urinalysis. 

Some crystals do not cause any problems. Meanwhile, some others can grow and form stones that stick to parts of the urinary tract and cause blockages. A blockage can cause serious problems, such as acute kidney injury (AKI), also called acute kidney injury (AKI).


What Types Of Crystals Are Found In Urine? 

The different types of crystals a technician may see in your urine are:

Ammonium Biurate, bilirubin, calcium oxalate, cystine, hippuric acid, leucine, struvite or magnesium ammonium phosphate, tyrosine, uric acid, xanthine.

A laboratory test can determine the type of crystal from the shape of the crystal by placing it under a microscope. Some crystals can have an undefined shape (amorphous).

The pH (acidity) of urine can affect the types of crystals that form.


Who Gets Crystals In Urine?

Anyone can have crystals in their urine. The presence of crystals does not always mean that you have some kind of disease, with the exception of cystine and xanthine. This crystal indicates a rare genetic disease. People who are  prone to kidney stones may have crystals in their urine.


How Does The Presence Of Crystals In The Urine Affect The Body?

Your urine may contain crystals but this doesn’t always mean something. But there are some crystals that can cause problems like kidney stones. When the crystals accumulate in large lumps, it can prevent urine from leaving the body. Some crystals can pass through the urinary tract and leave the body on their own, while others may need to be removed from the body with the help of a healthcare provider.


What Are The Notable Signs And Symptoms Of The Presence Of Crystals In Your Urine?

There may be no signs or symptoms of crystals in the urine. If so, it may include:

Pain, fever, cloudy or foamy urine, the feel of urinating more often than usual, hematuria (blood in urine), urine smells bad.


What Causes Crystals To Form In Urine?

There are many things that cause crystals to form in the urine. These include:

Dehydration (lack of water intake), consuming high amounts of certain foods, including protein, salt, fruits and vegetables; drugs such as amoxicillin, acyclovir, sulfonamides, atazanavir and methotrexate; urinary tract infection, ethylene glycol poisoning, presence of oncolytic syndrome resulting from  the death of a large number of cancer cells may occur as a result of cancer treatment.


Are Urine Crystals Contagious?

Crystalluria cannot be classified as a contagious disease. Even if you have a urinary tract infection, it is not contagious.


What Tests Will Be Done To Diagnose Urine Crystals?

Your health care provider may order a urine test as part of an annual checkup or as a result of a condition you report. Urine samples are analyzed in a laboratory. Other tests may be needed if your healthcare provider needs to order to properly diagnose your condition.


How Do You Deal With Urine Crystals?

Treatment depends on the cause of the crystal formation in your urine. In many cases, you may simply need to drink more water or cut back on certain foods or on foods with high salt and sugar.

If the crystal formation is due to a particular drug, the doctor may change the drug or dosage. If the crystal indicates a disease, the attending physician will treat that particular condition.

How To Reduce The Risk Of Crystals In The Urine?

You can reduce the risk of crystals in your urine and stones in your urinary tract by consuming an adequate amount of fluid such as water, trying to achieve and maintain a healthy weight, and eating only a moderate amount of protein.

You should also consult your healthcare professional or registered dietitian to determine how much calcium, oxalate and vitamin C you need for good health.

Eat less processed foods to reduce salt and sugar intake.


What Can You Expect From This Condition?

If there are crystals in the urine, the prognosis is very good. It depends on other treatment conditions.


When Should You See A Doctor If You Are Suffering From This Condition?

If you have pain, fever, or changes in your urine, you should call your doctor. Other stones, such as kidney stones and ureter stones, can be very painful. Also, toxins can remain in the body and cause problems.

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