Urine is a metabolic byproduct of the human body, which is formed in the kidneys from the blood by filtration and reabsorption processes. Normally, urine should be transparent and have a straw-yellow color, while its shade varies during a day, depending on the amount of fluid consumed. This color of urine is provided by the presence of various yellow pigments, mainly urochrome in its composition.
When something unusual happens with our body, it most often causes fright. However, you should not worry early. If the urine suddenly becomes dark, it can have a variety of causes, and not always a change in the color of urine indicates a disease. So the causes of dark urine can be divided into two groups: natural and pathological.
Natural causes of dark urine
- Low consumption of water;
- Increased physical activity or high air temperature;
- eating certain foods;
- long-term treatment with some drugs.
Normally, all people have darker urine in the morning: the reason for this phenomenon is the fact that over night, its concentration rises. A similar situation is observed when there is insufficient fluid consumption. During hot summer days, as well as with increased physical exercises, when sweating increases, urine also becomes more concentrated and dark. When drinking a large amount of fluid, the urine becomes lighter.
Foods that affect the urine color include legumes, rhubarb, beets, beef, bilberries, carrots, and others. Dark urine is often observed in people who constantly drink concentrated black tea and coffee. For these reasons, sometime after the appearance of dark urine, its color is restored to normal, if you stop eating or drinking these products.
Some medications also lead to darkening of the urine. When taking vitamins of C and B Group, the color of urine becomes dark yellow. The urine also becomes darker when anti-tuberculosis, antimalarial drugs, nitrofuran derivatives are taken.
Pathological Causes of Dark Urine
Dark urine may have a pathological nature:
- hepatitis and cirrhosis of the liver of various etiologies (viral, alcoholic, medicinal);
- kidney stones;
- cancer of the liver or pancreas with violation of bile outflow;
- fater’s papillary cancer;
- hemolytic anemia;
- metabolic diseases (porphyria, tyrosinemia, hemochromatosis);
- kidney diseases (urolithiasis, glomerulonephritis in the oliguria stage, polycystosis and kidney tumors);
- copper poisoning;
The nature of the urine color is important. If the urine is dark brown – the cause can be related to the pathology of the liver.
If urine is of dark yellow color – it can be caused by urolithiasis at which the urine contains an increased amount of salts. In diseases of the kidneys, urine may become darker due to the ingestion of red blood cells or a large content of salts. Then it often has an admixture of blood, a sediment after standing, caused by settling of salts and other substances.
If there is a green tint, it indicates hepatitis. The dark yellow color of urine is also characteristic for the state of dehydration of the body, infectious processes and congestive phenomena in the kidneys. Dark and cloudy urine admixed with purulent filaments and sediment can indicate a STD or prostatitis or Hepatitis B.
What should you do if your urine is dark?
“What should I do if my urine is dark?” is the issue many people are concerned about. Dark urine is not always an occasion to visit a doctor. Its color may be due to the physiological characteristics of the body, the intake of certain medicines and food. In this case, urine color becomes normal by itself after a while. If dark color of the urine is accompanied by an abnormal odor, cloudiness, as well as other pathological symptoms, it is necessary to consult specialists. These symptoms include: yellowness of the skin, mucous coats and sclera, increased body temperature, headache, itching, general weakness, fatigue, pain in the lumbar region; nausea, vomiting; painful repeated urination. If any of these signs are found, you should apply to the health provider. The doctor will prescribe tests and examinations to determine the cause of dark urine and choose methods for its elimination. You shouldn’t ignore these symptoms or self-medicate. It can lead to the progression of the disease and the development of serious consequences for your health
FAQs on Dark Urine
What are the causes of dark urine and backache?
In spite of the fact that causes of dark urine can be natural like intake of special food or medicine, insufficient drinking of water resulted in dehydration, if it is accompanied by backache, it can indicate more serious problems. Pains in the back can be the signs of various diseases of the liver, kidneys as well as urogenital system including hepatitis, stones in kidneys or bladder, STS, prostatitis, cystitis, gastrointestinal bleeding, liver cirrhosis or cancer. If you have these symptoms, you should consult the doctor immediately. The earlier you are tested and diagnosed, the more effective and easier treatment will be and the less risk of complications development there will be.
What are the causes of dark yellow color of urine?
If urine is of dark yellow color, this can primarily indicate stagnant changes in the genitourinary system and kidneys, disturbances in the metabolic processes in the gallbladder. This is also a symptom of bilirubinuria and dyspeptic phenomena in the intestinal region that manifest themselves as nausea and vomiting. Dehydration also causes the dark yellow color of urine. It is the result of severe sweating or diarrhea. In any case, if your urine is dark yellow for a long time, don’t try to make a diagnosis yourselves, only a specialist can do it properly.
What are the causes of dark brown urine in men?
Dark brown urine in men can have both natural and pathological reasons. Natural causes include eating special food; intake of some medicines; intense sweating due to heat or heavy physical exertion, dehydration of the body due to insufficient intake of liquid. In the case of the natural origin of the symptoms, they can be quickly eliminated by changing the drinking regime, excluding foods that cause changing in urine color, limiting the intake of medications. If after that the color does not return to normal, then it is worth considering whether the disease is the cause of the dark brown color of urine.
The causes of dark brown urine in men can include pathalogical processes in the prostate and testicles. This is due to the fact that not only the urine passes through the urethra, but also the seminal fluid and the secret of the prostate gland. When prostatitis develops, there is blood congestion in the prostate gland, as a result red blood cells get into urine during urination. Brown urine in men can appear if there are inflammatory processes, affecting the epididymis. In this case, most likely, there will be additional symptoms like pain in the testicles, painful urinating. In any case, only a doctor can determine the causes of dark brown color of urine, and make a precise diagnosis, so if you have abnormal urine color, consult the health provider immediately.