The presence of white stuff in urine may be harmless or it may be indicative of some underlying illness. Patients need to seek medical attention if such white stuff in urine is accompanied by additional symptoms like fever, pain, burning sensations when passing urine, frequent urination, etc.
A urinalysis can help detect the cause of white stuff in urine. Such urine tests check for urine color, clarity, specific gravity, odor, protein, pH level, nitrites, glucose, and leukocytes well as floating stuff in urine like casts, blood cells, squamous cells, and crystals or stones, etc.
Causes of white stuff in urine
Most cases of white stuff in urine are not serious. However, if clumps of white stuff are found in urine, then patients need to consult a doctor. Some of the common causes and associated symptoms of white stuff in urine are listed below:
- UTI/Urinary Tract Infection: Normal urine is a colorless or yellowish fluid contain waste matter and devoid of bacteria or other germs. Infection of the urinary system by E. coli bacteria is one of the main cause of the presence of suspended tiny white particles in urine. These germs can enter the urinary tract via the urethra or the bloodstream. Patients may experience painful urination, persistent urination, and burning sensations when passing urine. UTIs are treated with antibiotics and better personal hygiene.
- Sediments: Presence of white sediments in urine is quite common. It is usually related to phosphate debris in alkaline urine. Sediments can occur due to yeast or fungus in the urinary tract or due to detachment of the urinary tract walls/lining.
- Kidney problems: White stuff in urine can also occur due to varied kidney problems like kidney infections and kidney stones.
- Urine consists of minerals, urea, etc. Kidney dysfunction can cause oxalate and calcium buildup in the kidneys which then crystalline and form kidney stones. These stones get removed via urine as white sandy granules. People with previous cases of kidney stones are more like to suffer from reoccurrences. Associated symptoms included severe radiating flank pain, urination problems, etc. The stones may be removed naturally by drinking lots of water, or it may require surgical intervention.
- Kidney infections are caused due to spread of infections of the bladder or other urinary system parts to the kidneys. Long-term catheter use, impaired immune systems, and being a woman increases the risk to kidney infections. Along with white stuff in urine, patients may experience chills, fever, malaise, painful urination, nausea, and bloody urine, etc. It is treated with antibiotics, painkillers, and hospitalization in severe cases.
- Bacterial vaginosis/BV: It is caused due to overgrowth of a certain type of bacteria that is naturally present in the vagina. Patients may elicit symptoms like fishy and foul smell from the vagina, itchiness in and around the vagina, and excessive vaginal discharge that causes grey or white stuff in urine. Women need to seek immediate medical attention as untreated cases can result in complications like pelvic inflammatory disease.
- Parasitic infections: Infections of the urinary system like schistosomiasis and filariasis are caused by wormy organisms which appear suspended in urine as white stuff. Trichomoniasis, a parasitic infection of the urinary tract, is marked by presence of mucus thread-like suspensions in urine.
- Monilia infection: The vaginal tract naturally has minor amounts of yeast presence. Changes in the pH levels in the tract can trigger the multiplication and growth of this yeast, leading to Monilia infection. Affected women may elicit symptoms like excessive vaginal discharge; itchiness, redness, and burning sensations around the vagina; and white and clumpy cottage-cheese-like discharge that gets released as white stuff in urine. Treatment includes antifungal pills, vaginal creams, or suppositories that helps control the overgrowth of the yeast.
- Bladder infections: Also referred to as cystitis, bladder infections are caused due to problems in bladder voidance, unsafe sex, and pregnancy related enlarged uterus. Patients may experience inflammation of the bladder wall, pain, burning sensations when passing urine, bladder spasms, and smelly and cloudy urine with white suspended stuff. It is treated with pain medications, antibiotics, better personal hygiene, and lifestyle changes.
- Retrograde ejaculation: It is a condition wherein the semen passes into the urinary bladder instead of the penile duct. This semen is then released in urine as white stuff. The condition occur when during ejaculation the lower sphincter muscles of the urinary tract do not open as they are supposed to or when the upper sphincter muscles do not close. Men with past cases of any kind of prostate surgery are more likely to suffer from retrograde ejaculation.
- Sexually transmitted diseases/STDs: The presence of white stuff in urine along with itchiness and pus is usually a sign of an STD.
- Other conditions: Candidiasis is a fungal infection that is known for causing white stuff in urine. White particles in urine may also occur due to varied conditions like urinary system blockages, tumors, prostate hypertrophy, bladder cancer, polyps, and biological and hormonal changes that occur during pregnancy.