Urine Hemosiderin

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    Age group

    Above 10 years

    Hemosiderosis is a condition when there is an excessive accumulation of iron in the tissues or organs. The red blood cells are the main storage spaces for iron. However, when these cells die, they release iron that becomes a pigment called hemosiderin.

    If your body undergoes excess accumulation of this pigment, you may face symptoms like fatigue, wheezing, unexplained weight loss, or coughing. In extreme cases of hemosiderosis, you can suffer from organ damage. To avoid such complications, a urine hemosiderin test can prove helpful in detecting hemosiderosis.

    Generally, hemosiderin in the urine can accumulate due to the release of haemoglobin into your bloodstream. This pigment can deposit around the kidneys due to one of the following reasons:

    • Repeated blood transfusions
    • Dialysis
    • Goodpasture syndrome
    • Paroxysmal nocturnal haemoglobinuria
    • Haemolytic anaemia

    To detect the presence of hemosiderin, a urine sample is needed. The test evaluation can assess the possibility of renal disease or organ damage. Before taking a urine specimen, your doctor may recommend a complete blood test. This test helps determine the iron levels in your bloodstream.

    After proper evaluation, your doctor may suggest a Computed Tomography (CT) or Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) scan to analyse any damage to your lungs or other organs.

    The urine hemosiderin test at Apollo 24|7 does not have any complex requirements. However, you need to follow some fundamental guidelines before providing your urine sample:

    • Refrain from consuming alcohol at least a day before the test
    • Drink plenty of water 
    • Consume fruits 

    You can also follow similar protocols that resemble testing for detecting a urinary tract infection. The urine specimen can reveal adequate information for the diagnosis of conditions like kidney disorders, liver problems, or hemosiderosis. This test can also prove effective in detecting diseases like bladder stones, diabetes, and other metabolic conditions.   

    Medically reviewed by Dr. K Ramesh, Urologist from Apollo Hospitals Greams Road, Chennai.

    faqFrequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

    Frequently asked questions

    Hemosiderin staining happens on the ankles, feet, or lower leg. In such cases, blood leaks from the capillaries, and haemoglobin accumulate and settles in the tissues around this area. Hence, it is vital to undergo a urine hemosiderin test or complete blood testing for timely treatment.
    Most common treatments for hemosiderosis are oxygen therapies, respiratory therapy, immunosuppression, or blood transfusions. These medical therapies depend on the severity of this iron-based condition. In case this disease affects your skin, the treatments can include using skin creams to lighten the dark spots.
    Iron excretion takes place through the urine. It is also excreted through the liver into the bile, which transports to the small intestine. It then exits your body through faeces or by undergoing enterohepatic circulation. In other cases, iron can also exit by shedding cells of the skin or through sweating.
    The hemosiderin pigments appear golden brownish in colour. They are globular in shape and have a partial composition of lysosomes and digested ferritin.
    Your body can store too much iron in case of hereditary hemochromatosis. In this condition, your body absorbs iron from the food. This excess iron accumulates in organs like the liver, heart, pancreas, lungs, or kidneys. An overabundance of iron can lead to conditions such as heart issues, liver problems, and diabetes. So, medical examinations like a urine hemosiderin test are useful to detect conditions due to excess accumulation of iron.
    Treatment like iron chelation therapy helps flush out excess iron from your body. In this process, your doctor can recommend oral medicines or injections.

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    The information mentioned above is meant for educational purposes only and should not be taken as a substitute to your Physician’s advice. It is highly recommended that the customer consults with a qualified healthcare professional to interpret test results