Calcium - urine
This test measures the amount of calcium in urine. All cells need calcium in order to work. Calcium helps build strong bones and teeth. It is important for heart function, and helps with muscle contraction, nerve signaling, and blood clotting.
See also: Calcium - blood
How the Test is Performed
A 24-hour urine sample is usually needed:
For an infant, thoroughly wash the area where urine exits the body.
This procedure may take a few tries. An active baby can move the bag, causing urine to go into the diaper. You may need extra collection bags.
Check the infant often and change the bag after the infant has urinated into it. Drain the urine from the bag into the container provided by your health care provider.
Deliver the sample to the laboratory or to your health care provider as soon as possible.
How to Prepare for the Test
Many medicines can interfere with blood test results.
How the Test will Feel
The test involves only normal urination, and there is no discomfort.
Why the Test is Performed
Urine calcium levels can help your doctor:
If you are eating a normal diet, the expected amount of calcium in the urine is 100 to 300 mg/day. If you are eating a diet low in calcium, the amount of calcium in the urine will be 50 to 150 mg/day.
Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.
The examples above show the common measurements for results for these tests. Some laboratories use different measurements or may test different specimens.
Note: mg/day = milligrams per day
What Abnormal Results Mean
High levels of urine calcium (above 300 mg/day) may be due to:
Low levels of urine calcium may be due to:
Wysolmerski JJ, Insogna KL. The parathyroid glands, hypercalcemia, and hypocalcemia. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Goldman's Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 253.
Review Date: 5/11/2013
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Bethanne Black, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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