indications for testing for proteinuria

Last reviewed 08/2021

Indications for testing for proteinuria

Dipstick urinalysis for protein is indicated

  • As part of the initial assessment of patients with
    • if a patient has a newly discovered GFR < 60 ml/min/1.73 m2
    • if a patient has newly discovered haematuria
    • newly diagnosed hypertension
    • if there is unexplained oedema
    • in cases of suspected heart failure
    • suspected multisystem disease, e.g. SLE, systemic vasculitis
    • diabetes mellitus
  • As part of the annual monitoring of patients with
    • biopsy-proven glomerulonephritis
    • reflux nephropathy
    • asymptomatic microscopic haematuria
    • asymptomatic proteinuria
    • Diabetes mellitus (patients with diabetes mellitus should also have annual testing for albumin:creatinine ratio if the dipstick urinalysis for protein is negative)
  • Monitoring for proteinuria is also required for patients receiving treatment with gold and penicillamine
    • recommendations for frequency of monitoring in the British National Formulary:
      • penicillamine
        • before commencing treatment and then every 1-2 weeks for the first 2 months, monthly thereafter, and in the week after any dose increase
      • intramuscular gold
        • before each intramuscular injection
        • for oral gold, monthly


  1. The Renal Association (May 2006).UK CKD Guidelines