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Kidney Diseases

High sugar level in urine

08/16/2006

Question:

I went to the Dr.`s a couple of days ago because I thought I had another uti infection. I finished medication 3 weeks ago after test results showed an infection. This past weekend I started having the symptoms again. Dr called me today and stated the test showed no signs of uti infection, but there were high levels of sugar in my urine. I had all my blood tests done 4 weeks ago during my annual physical and all test results came back normal. What can cause such a high level of sugar in my urine? I have within the past couple of days been getting sharp pains in the right kidney area to the point that it knocks the breath right out of me. Could you please give me some insight?

Answer:

Sugar in the urine is almost always caused by diabetes. When blood sugar levels are high (as they are in diabetes), sugar can spill over into the urine. However, blood sugar levels go up and down all day long, depending on what a person has eaten recently. So perhaps your blood sugar happened to be normal at the time you had your tests done 4 weeks ago.

However, you should see your physician again as soon as possible to definitely determine whether you have diabetes. If you do, it is important to begin treatment (diet +/- medicine) as soon as possible in order to prevent complications of this disease. Note that diabetics do have a greater tendency to have both bladder/kidney infections, urinary tract infections, and vaginal infections, so perhaps your symptoms are caused by a vaginitis. Rarely, sugar can be found in the urine when the person is not diabetic (when the blood sugar is normal). The most common condition in which this happens is pregnancy.

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Response by:

Mildred   Lam, MD Mildred Lam, MD
Associate Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University