Epithelial Cells in Urine

What are Epithelial Cells in Urine?

Epithelial cells in urine (also known as transitional epithelial cells) are cells that line the urinary tract and are shed from mucosal surfaces in the process of urination. Epithelial cells are the most common cells found in urine and can provide important information about the health of the urinary tract. Urine is typically analyzed to detect any presence of these cells in order to determine if there is an underlying medical condition.

Preparation for Epithelial Cells in Urine Testing

In preparation for an epithelial cells in urine test, the doctor will need to take an adequate and clean collection sample, typically from a midstream urine specimen. The patient should clean their genitals with soap and water prior to collection. Prior to collection the doctor should also explain the process. Additionally, the patient should follow the procedure and instructions as prescribed by their doctor.

Types of Epithelial Cells in Urine

There are three main types of epithelial cells found in urine: squamous, transitional, and uroepithelial. Squamous epithelial cells originate from the lower third of the urethra. Transitional epithelial cells are found in the bladder and the renal pelvis. Uroepithelial cells come from the lining of the ureters and the renal pelvis. Epithelial cells can also have different appearances depending on their type.

What Happens during Epithelial Cells in Urine Testing?

A urine sample is collected as directed by the doctor and then examined under a microscope. Epithelial cells are identified and documented based on their characteristics, such as size, shape, and appearance. The presence of any abnormal cells can be detected, as well as any associated diseases or health conditions.

Risks of Epithelial Cells in Urine Testing

Epithelial cells in urine testing does not involve any risks and is considered to be a safe procedure. However, improper collection or contamination of the sample can lead to inaccurate results.

Why Perform Epithelial Cells in Urine Testing?

Epithelial cells in urine testing is conducted to detect any abnormalities in the urinary tract such as infection, inflammation, or trauma. Changes in the number or type of epithelial cells can be indicators of urinary tract disorders and medical conditions, such as kidney and bladder stones, cystitis, and urinary tract infections. It can also be used to monitor the effectiveness of treatment for these conditions.

When to Perform Epithelial Cells in Urine Testing?

Epithelial cells in urine testing can be performed at any time as part of a comprehensive evaluation of the urinary tract. It is often ordered in cases where there is a suspicion of a urinary tract disorder. It may also be recommended as part of a routine health check-up.