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» LymeNet Flash » Questions and Discussion » Medical Questions » Urine - Strong Smell, Dark Color

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Author Topic: Urine - Strong Smell, Dark Color
Terminator
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Anyone else has that? What's in the urine to cause that?

You know when you have a cold they say "drink plenty of fluid", I suppose it's to clear some metabolites/residues of the work of the immune system, but what exactly? Could it be what is so concentrated in my urine?

Is there such thing as a *complete* urine analysis panel?

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We will win

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Lymetoo
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I would get it checked out. You don't want to be having problems with your kidneys and not know about it.

It can also be a symptom of babesia. So... see your doctor!!

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--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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Keebler
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Some (but not all) types of porphyria can cause the urine to take on color. The most common color is purple but there are other specific colors, depending upon the type.

"Dark" urine, too, may be an indicator even if no particular color seems to pop out.
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http://flash.lymenet.org/scripts/ultimatebb.cgi/topic/1/91842?

PORPHYRIA
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Terminator
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I hate it when people say see your doctor! - Am I the only one whom Drs never care about anything?

I have a famous LLMD, supposedly an excellent PCP, etc. But they'll run the usual urine analysis (creatinine, pH, uleuk, uwbc, unit, glucose, etc) everything is normal so they stop there.

If they come breath in my bathroom they'll stop saying everything is normal. I would have to clean the toilet bowl daily to keep it white.

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dmc
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Vit B's can cause darker urine and I see to remember more of an odor when I took alot of B12.

Rifampin causes dark almost brown, in some cases, urine

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Terminator
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I should have specified that the color is dark yellow indeed, and independent of supplements/drugs.

keebler, would porphyria also cause a strong smell? how do you accurately test for porphyria?

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Keebler
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I assumed you've checked on line for all meds and OTC supplements -- and considered all you've eaten or liquids consumed. I also assume you've been drinking lots of water.

I do not know about urine odor with porphyria but if any toxins are too concentrated, smell could certainly be stronger.

As for accurate test, it's rather complex. All details are in the links from American and Canadian groups. I'd see the "Secondary Porphyria" link first.

Not for porphyria but for some basic parameters, if you aren't going to check with your doctor, see what kind of regular home tests your pharmacy may have. There are some basic dipsticks of sorts that anyone can buy.

First: consider diabetes (or elevated blood glucose, etc.). That can cause both dark color and smell. A dipstick check can help but it would not be definitive.

I do urge you to get a good basic urine test with your PCP - and also a fasting blood glucose level, maybe the glucose test that figure out your average from the past month or more - a HbA1c.
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nefferdun
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i don't know what else might cause dark urine (google it) but smelly urine can be caused from eating such things as cabbage.

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old joke: idiopathic means the patient is pathological and the the doctor is an idiot

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steve1906
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asparagus or certain vitamins can affect the odor of urine

How dark is your urine?
What does it mean if you see a dark yellow urine color? Typically, this is a sign that you are not drinking enough water. How much water have you drank for the day? You should be drinking 8 glasses of water a day. If you do not drink enough water, then your urine becomes over-concentrated with waste, which is why it is a darker yellow urine color. You may also notice a stronger odor since the concentration is higher.

Is food causing your dark yellow urine?
Now, some foods may also cause your urine to have a dark yellow urine color. Asparagus makes your urine darker yellow and it creates a strong odor.

The important thing is to think about your diet. Have you eaten any foods that might change your urine color? Are you drinking enough water? If you are drinking enough water, but your still have dark yellow urine color, then it may be food based. Beets also cause a dark yellow urine color.

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Everything I say is just my opinion!

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Terminator
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I don't think it's food based as it doesnt seem to vary according to what I eat.

I drink a boatload of water daily - not because i like drinking water (i hate it) but because my cognition improves when i drink so much. I'm talking about 3 gallons per day. yes i take electrolytes with that.

suppose i have secondary porphyria, are there efficient treatments? is it always either genetic or because of liver toxicity?

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Keebler
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Three gallons a day can still be far too much, even if you are compensating with electrolytes. That a lot of work for the kidneys. A lot.

If secondary porphyria is a concern, it's not something you "have" but a condition to manage until remission. It's mostly basic liver support with attention to a few key points outlined in that post.

If one or more genetic porphyria is involved, one must be careful for life, as detailed in other links there.
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randibear
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hmm, i was going to say dehydration but with you drinking so much water, that's out.

i'd say a doctor's visit is in order. sorry.

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lymie_in_md
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quote:
I hate it when people say see your doctor! - Am I the only one whom Drs never care about anything?
Your absolutely not the only one, but that's another topic.

Dark urine can be caused by many things, I've been eating a lot of beets lately (luv beets) and sure enough it will turn my urine darker and slightly red.

I would take an inventory of some of the things you eat and supplement with, especially a multivitamin. Then look online for areas that cause darker urine and then try to connect the dots. Then test a little bit by stopping one thing that might be causing the color change.

Another thought, get some ph paper and see if the urine is in the normal ph range.

I know if I take a lot of vitamin b2 it can affect the color of urine.

See a doctor anytime you feel you must.

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Bob

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Terminator
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I'll read the porphyria thread carefully but I dont think that's the answer. Shouldnt I have urine that is redish if it's not purple? or that change color with sun exposure? Or that I would have had symptoms long before that (I think i've only had that for 3 years)? my urine is just dark yellow, with no other colors.

I tested kryptopyrrole at the Direct Healthcare Access II inc and it came back negative. What's the "IGeneX" for porphyria?

At least I'm learning that this is not due to lyme, so I have to look somewhere else. It really feels like I was being poisoned by something, but I dont know what.

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Lymetoo
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Terminator... If your kidneys were failing and I said to you "drink more water".. I would be angry with myself later because I didn't say to you "See your doctor."

When someone comes on here with chest pain, I say the same thing.

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There's got to be a reason for this dark and smelly urine, and I hope you find out what it is. I was trying to make sure you had explored the usual testing.

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--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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Keebler
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I suspect the 3 gallons of water a day is overtaxing your kidneys. You kidneys could be breaking down.

And, yes, dehydration can happen from drinking too much water.

And, please do get checked for diabetes. Odor and color are indicators.

As for porphyria, there are many other colors urine can be. Green is actually one. It depends on the kind of porphyria.

And not all types of porphyria have any color to the urine. For those that do, sunlight can bring out the kind that has purple urine but light - ANY light - can also totally ruin the urine for testing for other kinds of those porphyrias for which urine can be colored.
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Keebler
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Even if electrolytes are supplemented, there is no way we can know exactly how much we need.

And my guess is that there is no man-made supplement that can come close to the proper balance of all minerals and electrolytes that we need from FOOD sources.

Pills are just not the same and, I wonder, if supplementing electrolytes along with excess water consumption adds more stress the the kidneys for that's just more they have to filter out.

Even the best electrolyte replacements are not intended for daily use and just can't cover all the bases. That powder we swallow is manufactured in a factory. Nutrients are best from foods.

Although this contest was over just a couple hours, I strongly suspect that 3 gallons of water a day can cause serious harm.
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http://www.drbenkim.com/drink-too-much-water-dangerous.html

WHY DRINKING TO MUCH WATER IS DANGEROUS

- by Dr. Ben Kim - Mar 31, 2009

On January 12, 2007, a 28-year old Californian wife and mother of three children died from drinking too much water. Her body was found in her home shortly after she took part in a water-drinking contest that was sponsored by a local radio show.
. . .

It is estimated that the woman who died drank approximately 2 gallons of water during the contest.

. . .

Your kidneys must work overtime to filter excess water out of your blood circulatory system.

Your kidneys are not the equivalent of a pair of plumbing pipes whereby the more water you flush through your kidneys, the cleaner they become; rather, the filtration system that exists in your kidneys is composed in part by a series of specialized capillary beds called glomeruli.

Your glomeruli can get damaged by unnecessary wear and tear over time, and drowning your system with large amounts of water is one of many potential causes of said damage. . . .

Forcing your body to accept a large amount of water within a short period of time - say, an hour or two - as several contestants did during the "Hold Your Wee for a Wii" contest can be fatally dangerous to your health. Here's why:

If you force large amounts of water into your system over a short period of time, your kidneys will struggle to eliminate enough water from your system to keep the overall amount at a safe level.

As your blood circulatory system becomes diluted with excess water, the concentration of electrolytes in your blood will drop relative to the concentration of electrolytes in your cells. In an effort to maintain an equal balance of electrolytes between your blood and your cells, water will seep into your cells from your blood, causing your cells to swell.

If this swelling occurs in your brain, the bones that make up your skull hardly budge.

The result is an increase in intracranial pressure i.e. your brain gets squeezed. Depending on how much water your drink in a short period of time, you could experience a wide variety of symptoms, ranging from a mild headache to impaired breathing.

And as occurred recently in the tragic water-drinking contest, it is quite possible to die if you drink enough water in a short enough period of time. . . .

- full article with more detail at link above.
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Keebler
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The measure of the overall renal function is the Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) -

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Glomerulus

A glomerulus is a capillary tuft that performs the first step in filtering blood to form urine.

It is surrounded by Bowman's capsule in nephrons of the vertebrate kidney. It receives its blood supply from an afferent arteriole of the renal circulation. Unlike most other capillary beds, the glomerulus drains into an efferent arteriole rather than a venule.

The resistance of the arterioles results in high pressure in the glomerulus, aiding the process of ultrafiltration, where fluids and soluble materials in the blood are forced out of the capillaries and into Bowman's capsule.

A glomerulus and its surrounding Bowman's capsule constitute a renal corpuscle, the basic filtration unit of the kidney. The rate at which blood is filtered through all of the glomeruli, and thus the measure of the overall renal function, is the glomerular filtration rate (GFR). . . .

- Illustrations and more detail at link.
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Lymetoo
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quote:
Originally posted by Keebler:

Three gallons a day can still be far too much, even if you are compensating with electrolytes. That a lot of work for the kidneys. A lot.

yes, it is

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--Lymetutu--
Opinions, not medical advice!

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Elaine G
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ALA ( Alpha Lipoic Acid ) causes a very strong smell in urine. No other supplement I take causes the strong odor, except for ALA.

Do you take ALA?

Supplements for me causes very yellow urine.

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Terminator
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I shouldnt have mentionned that I drink this much water, that clearly derailed the topic. Lets forget that I said that. Because anyway i dont always drink this much, and my urine problem started (got worse?) over 2 years ago, which is before i started drinking more water. I just drink a lot when i need to think.

So back to urine, during these 2+ years I've gone through every diet, every supplement, through periods without any supplements and meds, etc. As I mentionned before it's not due to supplements, drugs (meds) or food.

Glucose in urine is one of the standard thing they check, as I wrote above. There is none. I have pH strips at home, I have a glucose meter for blood sugar levels, etc. everything is fine [Frown]

I was thinking it could be ammonia, or it could be a compound containing sulfur. I analyzed the glutathione metabolites in my urine, there was nothing spectacular. Not sure how to check for other sulfur containing compound. For ammonia, i tried periods with very low meat/proteins and i dont think it helped. I also took cholestyramine for that.

The only other person I heard of with a similar problem is a woman in Dr Chrisler man cave forum, and apparently she fixed it by taking fludrocortisone (florinef). I tried it. Maybe I'll try it again, but it didnt appear to do anything. And my aldosterone levels are normal (low normal, but not lower than my cortisol levels).

Since this got worse when most of me symptoms hit me, I thought lyme would be involved. If it isnt, as I'm deducing from you answers, then I might have to reconsider a lot of stuff. I'm trying to figure out what's pulling me down the most.

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jac123
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Drink cranbery juice!I have that alot and sometimes all blood.They have done every test on me and well we all know the answer,"everything is fine."
My urine was strong and dark yellow yesterday,
drank cranbery juice and the kidneys stopped pounding,and it cleared up,for now.
Drink lots of cranberry juice and No caffeine!
Good luck,but call your Dr.just to make sure.

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Terminator
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alright ill give the cranberry juice a try. i think it slows phase I and accelerate some phase II of the liver detox pathways, but im not sure. maybe that's more pomegrenate. cranberry speeds up my bowel a lot

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We will win

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Wolfed Out
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Terminator,

I sense your frustration, and you're probably right about it not being supplements, because I had the same problem for many months.

It was very dark especially in the morning. My GP claimed it was likely due to dehydration. Maybe it was true, but it took many months to clear up and I drank a TON of water during that period.

It was dark yellow and very foul. Smelled very potent as well. It would leave stains around the rim of the toilet.

I believe I read somewhere this could be an indicator of infection as well. Feel comfort in knowing it did clear up for me after several months of multiple ABX treatment.

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