How to Test for Protein in Urine at Home

Proteinuria occurs when urine contains too much protein. Proteinuria is sometimes called hyperproteinuria. If the kidneys can’t filter waste and water, they may be sick. Healthy kidneys filter large protein molecules from the urine. Protein in the urine may indicate renal impairment or other health issues if the kidneys are not working correctly.

How to test for protein in urine at home

Diabetics, hypertensives, and individuals with a family history of kidney disease may be encouraged to take a protein urine test at home. Early detection of renal impairment using a simple home test kit may help preserve kidney function. Drugstores and pharmacies sell urine protein test strips, making it easy to monitor kidney function at home.

Purchasing a urine testing strip kit: how to choose, cost

Step 1: Choose the Right Urine Testing Strip Kit
To test for protein in urine at home, it’s essential to select a reliable urine testing strip kit. Search for a kit that includes easy-to-use strips that change color based on protein levels. Look for features such as quick results (usually within a minute), accurate results, and easy-to-read color charts for comparison. One popular option is the One Step Protein Urine Testing Kit, which offers 100 test strips for multiple uses.

Step 2: Compare the Costs
Urine testing strip kits are available at most pharmacies and drugstores. Prices may vary depending on the brand and the number of strips included. Consider checking if your insurance company will cover or reduce the cost of the strips with a prescription from your doctor. The average price for such tests ranges from $8 to $12.

Step 3: Purchase the Urine Testing Strip Kit
After choosing the appropriate urine testing strip kit and researching your options for cost reductions, make your purchase from a reputable pharmacy, drugstore, or online retailer such as Amazon. Remember to check for any additional costs, such as shipping fees, when purchasing online. 

Instructions for testing urine with a home kit

If you want to test for protein in your urine at home, follow these simple steps:

  1. Purchase a urine test kit that includes a urine testing strip. These strips are available at most pharmacies and drugstores.
  2. Collect a fresh sample of your urine in a clean container.
  3. Dip the urine testing strip into the sample according to the kit’s instructions.
  4. Find the results by matching the color of the strip to the color blocks on the kit’s container.
  5. Record your results in a notebook or log, along with your blood pressure and any swelling (edema) present.
  6. Notify your healthcare professional of your results as frequently as required and bring your notebook to each doctor’s visit.

Remember, this information does not replace the advice of a medical professional. Always consult with your healthcare provider before making any decisions based on home testing results. 

How to understand the result of the test: what is normal, high, low

Test ResultDescriptionRanges for Results
NormalNo protein detected in the urine sample; this indicates healthy kidney function.0 to 14 mg/dL for a random urine sample; less than 80 mg per 24 hours for a 24-hour urine sample.
LowSmall amounts of protein detected, but not significant enough to indicate a problem. A urine microalbumin test may be performed for more accurate detection of small amounts of protein.Not applicable, as a low result is within the normal range.
HighLarger amounts of protein found in the urine, which may indicate kidney damage or other health issues such as dehydration, high blood pressure during pregnancy, or urinary tract problems.Values higher than 14 mg/dL for a random urine sample or over 80 mg per 24 hours for a 24-hour urine sample. Consult your healthcare provider for personalized interpretation of results.
Note: The provided normal ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Consult your healthcare provider for accurate interpretation based on specific laboratory results. 

Follow up if required

Testing for protein in urine at home is a simple, inexpensive procedure that can be crucial in the early detection and monitoring of chronic kidney disease (CKD). To perform the test, purchase a urine test strip, such as the ones available at most pharmacies or online, and obtain a disposable urine collection cup. It is advisable to use the first urination of the morning for the most accurate results. Ensure the genital area is clean to avoid contamination, and collect a midstream urine sample in the cup.

Proceed by submerging the test strip into the urine sample for the recommended time (usually 1-2 seconds) and then removing any excess liquid. Wait until the designated reaction time has passed before comparing the color of the reagent pads on the strip to the colored grid provided by the manufacturer. Record the results, along with the date and time, either manually or using a urinalysis app like PURI, and share this information with your healthcare provider if necessary. Regular testing can provide a more reliable analysis of protein levels in urine and help keep track of any changes in kidney health.

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