Discussions By Condition: I cannot get a diagnosis.

Excessive Urine output with protein intake.

Posted In: I cannot get a diagnosis. 16 Replies
  • Posted By: Sunset1984
  • March 23, 2007
  • 04:33 AM

Hi, wondering if anyone can help....

For about the past five months my urine output has been unusually excessive, which started a few days after i started taking a protein supplement, which i stopped when symptoms came. But the symptoms continue to be brought on by eating protein rich foods, and taking multivitamins.

Other symptoms include darkness around eyes, fatigue and a sickness feeling.

I've had various tests including Kidney, Liver, Glucose and a 24hr Urine in which i filled to 3 liters and to which my Doctor said were all normal.

I'm currently experiencing problems with my eyes, (slight blured vision and redness, that without a doubt get worse the more protein i eat. When I ease off the protein/vitamins, the swelling/redness eases.

I also have Sickle cell disease, something that effects the red cells' ability to transport oxygen around the body efficiently, possibly leaving certain organs that bit more vuneralble. Though i did wet the bet untill my mid teens and have always urinted more frequently than others (possible reduced renal?) i have had no 'major' problems.

This is very frustrating as i know there's a problem, yet all tests come back clear with the doctors telling me not to worry.

Is there anything else someone can suggest? Could i have early stage renal failure?

Side note:
I've had no allergies (tested) and no infections, but i've been itching head to toe for 5 years, with no reason ever found.

Any ideas appreciated.
T

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16 Replies:

  • Why were you taking a protein supplement? It is quite possible that something in this or the vitamin supplements you have been taking is acting as a diuretic. 3 l is above average daily urine volume, but it is not an unimaginable amount. It could be that you might be depleting yourself of essential minerals, but it is hard to say. I am not sure what you mean by high protein food (it depends how much you eat). I think what you have to be wary of is eating protein at the expense of carbohydrates as this can lead to problems. Rings under your eyes if not caused by tiredness can suggest anaemia. This sounds like it could be related to your sickle cell problem. It is hard to say whether you have early signs of kidney failure without knowing anything about your age, habits or family background. If your urine tests are within limits, then your doctor is probably the best judge. And he doesn't think so. There are other causes of passing higher than average amounts of urine and some of these are probably far more likely. The most obvious one is that you might be simply drinking too much.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I was taking a protein supplement to add a little weight. Sickle cell also causes muscle wasting. The amounts taken were relatively small to what was being suggested. As for the dark 'rings' being caused by sickle cell, It's when i go out of my way to eat more protein than usaual that problems start, including dark discoloration of face. Protein being: Fish, eggs, chicken, vitamins and of course, the protein supplement, aswell as an amino acid supplement i once tried. All separatley and all consistantly. More protein, more problems, inc the worsening of my eyes. Drinking too much water is a theory i would find hard to accept, as just the same amounts of water being drank prior to this proved less than problematic. Besides, i don't drink that much. I Also felt more hydrated when i drank, Now, i drink a class of water, and urinate it back out within five/ten mins, seemingly as clear as when it went in. I used to see the benifits of drinking water on my skin, now i don't, as i don't hold my urine long enough to, which leads to believe i may be dehydrated. I know that frequent urine is quite common in people with Sickle cell, presumably because of organ weakness (don't know). So it's all the more worryng. Thanks for your input.
    Sunset1984 5 Replies Flag this Response
  • It sounds like you are frequently taking in excessive quantities of vitamins and nutrients that are beyond your body's capacity to process. Many people don't seem to realise that TOO much of anything-even vitamins-can be dangerous. Obviously I have no idea what dosage of supplements you are taking so this is just a thought, not an accusation.You should probably speak with a dietitian/nutritionalist in regards to this issue as well as a urologist. It's possible you have some kind of infection and its causing odd symptoms. Renal failure usually has pain from what I've read, but the possibility of an overactive bladder or similar issue is possible (again, urologist). Out of curiosity, when you urinate, do you completely empty your bladder or is there a sensation that there is some left over?
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I think the problems of polyuria associated with sickle cell disorders are down to permanent kidney damage caused by periods of restricted blood flow (which could have happened years ago). I think that other organs can be affected also. I believe that you have to be careful over eyesight for the same reasons, although I wonder in your case if the problems are because of dryress and irritation. If your problems come and go, then it might suggest it is not ongoing damage so much as a weakness of sorts. This is especially true in the case of your kidneys if the urine tests are not showing anything unusual. There are different types of sickle cell disorders and different things which can precipitate an attack (dehydration being one). If you are deficient in G6PD, I think there are some foodstuffs to avoid. But that is about the extent of by knowledge. Whatever, it sounds like your doctor could be giving you more help in dealing with your condition (especially relating to diet). I think you really should try and track down a consultant in sickle cell conditions who can tell you what you must and must not do. Worrying about it or not worrying about it isn't going to get you far. I wish you well.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Have you thought about acupuncture? It is very helpful for genito-urinary problems. The symptoms you are describing reflect an inbalance in Kidney and Liver energies. Chinese medicine provides a different way to diagnose, rather than treating "sickle cell", we treat the inbalance that is happening in the body. It is very effective and worth a try in my opinion. Please visit www.acufinder.com for more info and to find a practitioner near you. Best wishesDOM
    acuann 3,080 Replies Flag this Response
  • Thanks for the above comments. Chinese medicine is something to think about. It sounds like you are frequently taking in excessive quantities of vitamins and nutrients that are beyond your body's capacity to process. Many people don't seem to realise that TOO much of anything-even vitamins-can be dangerous. Obviously I have no idea what dosage of supplements you are taking so this is just a thought, not an accusation. You should probably speak with a dietitian/nutritionalist in regards to this issue as well as a urologist. It's possible you have some kind of infection and its causing odd symptoms. Renal failure usually has pain from what I've read, but the possibility of an overactive bladder or similar issue is possible (again, urologist). Out of curiosity, when you urinate, do you completely empty your bladder or is there a sensation that there is some left over? I take (or did take) very little. Maybe half a multivitamin. Same with the protein, very little. This isn't all at once by the way. It's not just my urine that intensifies upon consumption of protein. It's also the sickle cell pain, which i rerely had before this. Most of the time i feel relieved when i urinate. But i did have a 24hr urine test. Which i assume was checked for signs of infection? As for a urologist, my doc doesn't seem think to it's important enough to refer me, seeing as my blood tests all seem fine. He also said an ultra scan was pointless when i brought it up. What sort of test could a urologist conduct? I may have to go private. Thanks.
    Sunset1984 5 Replies Flag this Response
  • Basically you're taking in too much protein.(as quoted from the link at bottom):"Consuming too much protein can lead to other problems such as: Dehydration/increased urination: Protein requires more water to break down and digestDiarrhea and upset stomachCalcium loss from bonesPossible kidney damage with long-term use"You just need to lower your protein intake. Some people just can't build muscle as easy as others. Some people can sneeze and build muscle and others have to work out 6 days a week for the same results. That's genetics for ya.;)http://www.clevelandclinic.org/health/health-info/docs/3900/3926.asp?index=12552&src=newsp
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • What can a urologist do that my doctor coud not? Any ideas?
    Sunset1984 5 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi! So it's pain as well...that's interesting (though obviously it's also not good). Have you noticed the pain associated with specific types of protein? You could, for example, be allergic to whey protein or soy protein, but as this isn't in something like a steak you might not have the problem when eating meat. (Could be wrong though, but IIRC whey is derived from milk and soy from soybeans). Protein supplements are almost always made from Whey Protein Isolate, or else Soy. Though you mentioned poultry giving you problems as well...Yeah, the urine test would be for infection. Sometimes, when a person doesn't empty their bladder entirely, the urine that remains can infect the body. But if you're urinating frequently, then you seemingly would be emptying your bladder. The 24 hour test is actually more specific than just infections as it looks at the levels and output of different chemicals, including some in the brain. The idea of a urologist would be to do more specific testing and/or examinations of your urinairy track and presumably to determine why protein makes you urinate so frequently. Doctors usually won't give a referral to a specialist unless a test "warrants" it so I'm not surprised that your doctor doesn't want to. Still, a urologist is an expert in the field whereas your general practitioner might only know basic information beyond what obvious testing might tell them. Another option is an internist, a doctor specializing in internal medicine. Their job is to basically find out what causes mystery symptoms that normal doctors can't explain. This sounds like a rather serious issue, both because it causes pain and because it's interfering with your life, and so if you have to go to a private, out-of-network doctor then it's probably a good idea. About the Sickle Cell Disease: Do you know what type you have specifically (Sickle Cell Anemia, Sickle-Beta, etc.)? Still, I might have an idea for a possible experiment you could try if the disease works in a certain manner:If you get a CBC (complete blood count), will your particular variant of the disorder show up as any kind of abnormality? That is to say, would the RBC (Red Blood Cell count) be lower than for people without the disease? Would the WBC (White Blood Cell count) be higher? Assuming there is something "abnormal", my experiment would entail having blood drawn, consuming a substance with protein in it (or at least something that would bring on your symptoms), then having your blood drawn every 20 minutes (or perhaps in lesser intervals if your symptoms are much quicker) to try and ultimately create a "time graph" of sorts that shows your blood values. If something were to spike, it would offer a clue. This experiment is basically like a modified Glucose Tolerance Test used in the testing of diabetes. I thought of applying it to your situation because you specifically mention Sickle Cell related pain. In the event your variant of the disease doesn't show up as abnormalities in the CBC, you could have the experiment changed to whatever does show up as abnormal (perhaps it's liver enzymes, perhaps its related to the spleen, etc. Likewise, you might want to ask for a Glucose Tolerance Test to rule out the possibility of Type-2 Diabetes.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Not sure if this website might also be of help:http://www.scinfo.org/Apparently it's devoted to Sickle Cell Disease and has a number of links to related resources.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • Hi! So it's pain as well...that's interesting (though obviously it's also not good). Have you noticed the pain associated with specific types of protein? You could, for example, be allergic to whey protein or soy protein, but as this isn't in something like a steak you might not have the problem when eating meat. (Could be wrong though, but IIRC whey is derived from milk and soy from soybeans). Protein supplements are almost always made from Whey Protein Isolate, or else Soy. Though you mentioned poultry giving you problems as well... Yeah, the urine test would be for infection. Sometimes, when a person doesn't empty their bladder entirely, the urine that remains can infect the body. But if you're urinating frequently, then you seemingly would be emptying your bladder. The 24 hour test is actually more specific than just infections as it looks at the levels and output of different chemicals, including some in the brain. The idea of a urologist would be to do more specific testing and/or examinations of your urinairy track and presumably to determine why protein makes you urinate so frequently. Doctors usually won't give a referral to a specialist unless a test "warrants" it so I'm not surprised that your doctor doesn't want to. Still, a urologist is an expert in the field whereas your general practitioner might only know basic information beyond what obvious testing might tell them. Another option is an internist, a doctor specializing in internal medicine. Their job is to basically find out what causes mystery symptoms that normal doctors can't explain. This sounds like a rather serious issue, both because it causes pain and because it's interfering with your life, and so if you have to go to a private, out-of-network doctor then it's probably a good idea. About the Sickle Cell Disease: Do you know what type you have specifically (Sickle Cell Anemia, Sickle-Beta, etc.)? Still, I might have an idea for a possible experiment you could try if the disease works in a certain manner: If you get a CBC (complete blood count), will your particular variant of the disorder show up as any kind of abnormality? That is to say, would the RBC (Red Blood Cell count) be lower than for people without the disease? Would the WBC (White Blood Cell count) be higher? Assuming there is something "abnormal", my experiment would entail having blood drawn, consuming a substance with protein in it (or at least something that would bring on your symptoms), then having your blood drawn every 20 minutes (or perhaps in lesser intervals if your symptoms are much quicker) to try and ultimately create a "time graph" of sorts that shows your blood values. If something were to spike, it would offer a clue. This experiment is basically like a modified Glucose Tolerance Test used in the testing of diabetes. I thought of applying it to your situation because you specifically mention Sickle Cell related pain. In the event your variant of the disease doesn't show up as abnormalities in the CBC, you could have the experiment changed to whatever does show up as abnormal (perhaps it's liver enzymes, perhaps its related to the spleen, etc. Likewise, you might want to ask for a Glucose Tolerance Test to rule out the possibility of Type-2 Diabetes. Thank you for your reply. My variant of the disease is Sickle Cell Thalassaemia (Hb S-Beta+thal) which a little milder than Sickle Cell Anaemia (HbSS), with my blood haemoglobin level around the 10.1 g/dl mark. Recent blood test indicate that my white blood count is a little low, as has been the case for the past few months, a HIV test came back negative. Your ideas sound good, but my doctors (GP and heamatolgist) seemed satisfied with one set of urine and blood tests. At this I point like the idea of seeing a Urologist. My GP shouldn't refuse a referral request should he? If so, i may have to consider private. Thank you again.
    Sunset1984 5 Replies Flag this Response
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  • Hi again. Seeing a urologist would be a good idea then, just to make sure it isn't any kind of urinairy track-related problem. It's also beneficial because she or he might be able to order more specific testing than a normal doctor would think of. I don't see why your doctor wouldn't give you a referral, but it ultimately depends on the person. Sometimes they don't like the idea of being "underminded"; it kind of makes them think "this patient obviously doesn't trust my judgement", sometimes they will do it just to try and get rid of you, sometimes they will do it because you are asking, etc. The bottom line however, is that the medical system works FOR you (especially considering how much insurance costs) and so you have every right to request a referral.If your doctor won't give you a referral, consider changing offices and seeing if the next one will. You really shouldn't have to pay out of pocket for something as simple as a urologist. Out of curosity, did your heamotologist order any kind of testing to investigate the WBC issue? If it's a bit low, it might be nothing, or it might be a sign of something causing the other problems. This link to Wikipedia lists a bunch of possible reasons for a low WBC:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LeukopeniaIt's true that excess protein consumption can cause frequent urination, however your inability now to eat ANY food high in protein without the problem occuring is the real issue- you're not taking the supplement anymore but the problem hasn't gone away. Please keep us up to date with your progress! I'd also like to know what's causing this problem.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • This is somewhat related. I've taken different protein supplements in the past. The problem I'm about to describe is also caused by protein bars. It seems that any type of artificial protein causes the problem. Whenever I take it I get sick, as if I have a really bad cold. My nose starts this annoying nasal drip and I get a sore throat. I feel fatigued and generally crappy. Currently I am also coughing. I do not however have any stomach or nausea issues. I just tried to take some again but after two days of a 1/4 of the recommended dosage, I am sick. I've forgotten what other symptoms I get if I continue taking the supplements. It's been about 5 years since the last time I tried. I have stopped taking the supplements because of this but I can't seem to figure out why this happens. Does anybody have any idea why this might be occuring?
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • To the last poster- sounds like you might be allergic to some of the things used in the bars. The poweders are just powders but the bars have more in them because they're esentially candy bars. Because dieting is against the idea of candy, obviously all of that "sugar" has to come from artificial chemicals. Sugar Alcohol is commonly used in diet bars and can cause lots of problems, though usually GI related.
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I had exactly the same problem. It is common for a high protein intake to cause excessive urination. Also for that quantitiy of urine it could be what I had - nephrogenic diabetes insipidus - try taking a potassium supplement and see if that helps. Cut back on sodium in your diet and increase the potassium - it may take a few weeks but should work. Also try getting protein from vegetarian sources rather than animal products
    Anonymous 42,789 Replies Flag this Response
  • I had exactly the same problem. It is common for a high protein intake to cause excessive urination. Also for that quantitiy of urine it could be what I had - nephrogenic diabetes insipidus - try taking a potassium supplement and see if that helps. Cut back on sodium in your diet and increase the potassium - it may take a few weeks but should work. Also try getting protein from vegetarian sources rather than animal products How were you diagnosed, high sodium levels in you blood? I ask because all my test have come back fine according to my doctors. What do I need to look out for? Thanks
    Sunset1984 5 Replies Flag this Response
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