Home >> Encyclopedia Americana, Volume 27 >> Units Of Measurement to Van Der Donck >> Urine_P1


normal, color, acid, mucus, matters, water and passed

Page: 1 2

URINE, the fluid secreted by the kidneys, stored in the bladder and discharged by the urethra. It is an excrementitious fluid, eject ing from the system substances which if re tained would impair health and destroy life (retention and suppression of urine). Healthy urine consists of water, urea, uric acid, hip puric acid, creatinin, phosphates, chlorides and sulphates, mucus and other ingredients. The abnormal matters found in the urine in various conditions include acetone, albumin, albumose, bile, blood, cystin, glucose, hemoglobin, fat, pus, spermatozoa, epithelial cells, casts, etc. (See URINARY ANALYSIS). Normal urine is a trans parent aqueous fluid, of an amber color, acid reaction, a peculiar odor, and with a specific gravity of about 1.020 when passed in the aver age quantity of 50 ounces in the 24 hours. But each one of these characteristics is liable to some variations within the limits of health, as well as in disease.

As to transparency, it is quite constant, but cannot be considered an essential of normal urine, and on the other hand, because a given specimen of urine is transparent it is not neces sarily normal. Urine transparent when passed frequently shows a faint cloudiness in some portion when standing, due to mucus, the slimy secretion from the mucous surface of the urinary organs. This cloudiness is most pro nounced in the urine of females. Mucus can be filtered out, leaving the urine clear. Normal slightly acid urine may be somewhat turbid when passed from the presence of the earthy phosphates of calcium and magnesium, which after a time subside in the vessel, becoming a sediment. This sediment will disappear on the addition of a few drops of any acid, as nitric, but is increased by heat applied. Sometimes normal urine, on standing for a short time in a cold room, deposits a white or pink light sedi ment, the mixed urates of sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium. This is believed to be due to the lowering of the temperature of the urine. Normal urine may also be somewhat turbid from the presence of alkaline carbonates. Pathologically, urine may be more or less opaque from abnormal degrees of the above conditions, or from the presence of pus, bac teria or fat, as in chylous urine, so called. As

the result of disease the normal aqueous urine may become viscid or glutinous from the pres ence of mucus, or mucus and pus, etc. As to the color of normal urine, it is subject to con siderable variation in health. As color is due to coloring matters in solution, it is deeper or paler according to the proportion of water present. For example, after much beer or water drinking the discharge of urine is large and the color very pale. When the skin is active, excreting much water in perspiration, the amount of urine is diminished and the color darker than usual; but in winter, when the skin is less active, the urine is increased in amount and is of lighter color. As the result of disease, there may be almost an entire ab sence of color, as in the copious urines of diabetes, hysteria and convulsions. Or it may be high colored in fevers and febrile states, due to a diminution in the amount of water and the addition of abnormal coloring matters such as blood, or blood-coloring matters or bile pigments. Certain vegetable matters, such as santonin, also color the urine.

The reaction of normal mixed urine or the urine of the entire 24 hours is always acid. Freshly passed urine at different times of the day shows usually a varying amount of acidity; but urine examined three or four hours after a meal may be neutral or even alkaline. The cause of this change is still doubtful. Urine allowed to stand for a short time, especially in a moderate temperature, sometimes increases in acidity. The cause is not definitely settled. Neutral and even acid urines standing for some time, especially in hot weather, become alka line, have an ammoniacal odor, and are turbid, and sometimes an iridescent pellicle forms on the surface. The turbidity and sedimentary de posits are caused by the precipitation of the crystalline triple phosphate of ammonium and magnesium, the amorphous phosphate of lime, the urate of ammonium and by bacteria.

Page: 1 2