ISSN 2398-2985      

Urinalysis: dipstick analysis

4ferrets

Overview

  • Urinalysis is an inexpensive test that can be easily and quickly performed in practice.
  • Results can provide useful information and should be part of the minimum database for a patient.
  • Results can often help veterinarians diagnose both urinary tract disorders and systemic diseases.
  • Complete urinalysis should include measurement of chemical analytes by use of a dipstick, microscopic sediment examination Urinalysis: centrifuged deposit and urine specific gravity reading.

Sampling

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Tests

Methodologies

  • Determine specific gravity by refractometer as there is no correlation between the specific gravity determined by reagent strips and refractometer.
  • With dipstick determination, false results can occur in alkaline urine or urine containing large amounts of protein.
  • Methods for applying urine to dipstick:
    • EITHER rapid, complete immersion of the dipstick into the urine with immediate shaking off of excess urine. The dipstick should be held level to avoid run-off between pads.
    • OR a 1 ml syringe can be used to apply droplets of urine to each individual pad while on a flat surface. Excess is shaken off and the dipstick held in a horizontal plane. This will prevent any contamination and color run from neighboring pads.
  • The diagnostic pads on the dipstick should be checked for color against the reference range at the correct time interval.

Availability

  • Readily and inexpensively performed in-house.
  • All external laboratories.

Technique (intrinsic) limitations

  • Urine specific gravity reading is unreliable.

Technician (extrinsic) limitations

  • Interpretation of results is dependent on the technician's determination of color change.
  • Care should be taken to avoid blotting between pads, which may distort the color and deem results inaccurate.
  • Following the same approach for every analysis results in consistent findings and allows the technician to develop experience.
  • Results should be read at the advised time intervals, alterations in this leads to inaccuracies.

Result Data

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed Papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource
  • Duhamelle A, Langlois I & Desmarchelier M (2015) Transient diabetes mellitus in a domestic ferret (Mustela putorius furo). Can Vet J 56 (7), 737-740 PubMed.
  • Eshar D, Wyre N R & Brown D C (2012) Urine specific gravity values in clinically healthy young pet ferrets (Mustela furo). J Small Anim Pract 53, 115–119 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Quesenberry K E & Orcutt C (2012) Basic Approach to Veterinary Care. In: Ferrets, Rabbits and Rodents Clinical Medicine and Surgery. 3rd edn. Eds: Quesenberry K E & Carpenter J W. Elsevier Saunders, USA. pp 13-26.
  • Lennox A (2009) Ferrets: Clinical pathology. In: BSAVA Manual of Ferrets and Rodents. Eds: Keeble E & Meredith A. British Small Animal Veterinary Association, UK. pp 230-236
  • Schoemaker N J (2009) Ferrets: endocrine and neoplastic diseases. In: BSAVA Manual of Ferrets and Rodents. Eds: Keeble E & Meredith A. British Small Animal Veterinary Association, UK. pp 320-329

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