Felis ISSN 2398-2950

Urinalysis: white blood cells

Synonym(s): WBC

Contributor(s): Kathleen P Freeman, Karen L Gerber, Andy Torrance

Overview

  • To detect white blood cells (WBCs).
  • WBCs on microscopic examination of urine sediment indicates inflammation of the urinary tract due to urolithiasis, infection and neoplasia.

Sampling

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Tests

Methodologies

  • Decant supernatant.
    Either Add 1 drop of sedistain or a supravital stain such as Sternheimer-Malbin to the sediment.
    Or Leave 0.5 ml urine in centrifuge tube.
  • Resuspend sediment by vigorously tapping the centrifuge tube.
  • Transfer one drop of sediment to a microscope slide (via a pipette) and place a coverslip over it.
  • Lower the condenser on microscope to improve contrast.
  • Systematically examine entire specimen under the lower power objective, assessing quantity and type of sediment.
  • Examine sediment under the high power objective to identify morphology of elements and to detect bacteria.

Availability

  • All veterinary practices.
  • External laboratories.

Validity

Sensitivity

  • Moderate to high.

Specificity

  • Low.

Result Data

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from VetMedResource and PubMed.
  • Brobst D (1989) Urinalysis and associated laboratory procedures. Vet Clin North Am Small Anim Pract 19(5), 929-949.
  • McCaw D L, Fleming E J & Mikiciuk M G (1989) Interpreting the results of urinalysis - a key to diagnosing renal disorders. Vet Med 84(3), 281-286.
  • Thrall M A et al (1984) Clinicopathologic findings in dogs and cats with ethylene glycol intoxication. JAVMA 184(1), 37-41.

Other sources of information

  • Kaneko J J (1997) Clinical Biochemistry of Domestic Animals. 5th edn. Harvey J W & Bruss M L (eds). Boston: Academic Press.
  • Duncan J R, Prasse K W & Mahaffy E A (1994) Veterinary Laboratory Medicine Clinical Pathology. 3rd edn. Ames: Iowa University Press.


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