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how much protein in urine is bad during pregnancy

1 Assistant Profssor, Division of Biochemistry, AIIMS, Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India.

2 Affiliate Professor, Division of Biochemistry, TMMC & RC, Moradabad, Uttar Pradesh, India.

3 Professor, Division of Biochemistry, NIMS, Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.





Antenatal exams generally carried out embody measurement of weight and blood stress, estimation of haemoglobin, and qualitative exams for proteins in urine. Whereas the higher restrict of the urinary protein excretion is 150 mg/d in regular non–pregnant girls [1], it elevated as much as about 300 mg/d in regular being pregnant, resulting from improve in blood quantity and, subsequently, the glomerular filtration price. Protein excretion exceeding 500 mg/d is central to the analysis of preeclampsia in a hypertensive being pregnant and is statistically related to detrimental outcomes [2].

Routine examination of random spot urine samples is often carried out by semi-quantitative exams like warmth coagulation check, Heller’s nitric acid check, and urinary dipsticks. Although simple to carry out, these exams point out the approximate protein focus on the time of sampling and fail to offer an thought in regards to the whole day by day excretion of protein. Thus, if the urine output in in the future is way much less or greater than 1 litre, misinterpretation of result’s prone to happen. Each day excretion of protein might be ascertained solely by quantitative evaluation of protein in a 24–hour urine pattern. That is typically cumbersome, inconvenient, entails lacking work/faculty, has poor compliance in ambulatory sufferers [3], and sometimes delays analysis and therapy [4].

The estimation of Protein Creatinine Ratio (PCR) or Protein Creatinine Index (PCI) from spot urine samples obtained from pregnant girls exhibits promising diagnostic worth for important proteinuria in suspected pre–eclampsia [5], a situation that complicates 2%–8% of all pregnancies [6]. Nonetheless, racial variations in creatinine excretion have been reported [7] with Indo-Asians displaying decrease creatinine excretion and better albumin/ creatinine ratios [8]. Due to this fact, outcomes obtained in a single racial/ethnic group is probably not relevant to others.

There’s little information evaluating protein excretion within the three trimesters of being pregnant [9]. We’re unable to search out literature evaluating the urinary protein excretion in Indian non-pregnant and pregnant girls. Within the current research, carried out on North Indian topics, now we have decided regular PCI in wholesome non-pregnant girls, in contrast it with that in pregnant girls, and have in contrast the protein excretion and PCI within the three trimesters of being pregnant. Now we have additionally in contrast the routine qualitative exams and dipsticks with urinary PCI for the detection of proteinuria.

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The research was performed throughout a interval of 6 months (April–September, 2011) at Teerthanker Mahaveer Medical School and Analysis Centre, Moradabad, India, after acquiring permission from the Institute’s Moral Committee. Untimed urine samples had been obtained from regular pregnant girls (n=57) visiting the outpatient division of the Gynaecology and Obstetrics Division of the faculty. Urine samples from wholesome non-pregnant girls (n=80) of the identical age group (between 18–36 years) had been obtained equally whereas the themes weren’t within the menstrual part of the cycle.

Qualitative and semi-quantitative evaluation of urine for protein was carried out utilizing warmth coagulation check, Heller’s nitric acid check, and sulfosalicylic acid check [10] and by urinary dipsticks based on producer’s directions. Quantitative colorimetric estimation of urinary protein was accomplished by sulfosalicylic acid technique [11] and of urinary creatinine by modified Jaffe’s technique [12]. Protein creatinine index of every urine pattern was decided by the strategy of Shaw et al., [13].

Statistical Evaluation: Regular vary of urinary PCI was calculated from the info obtained from wholesome non–pregnant topics, utilizing non–parametric technique because the frequency distribution was non-Gaussian. The two.fifth to 97.fifth percentile (95%) of the frequency distribution curve was taken because the reference or regular vary.

Information had been in contrast by Scholar’s t–check and by ANOVA. p–Values lower than 0.05 had been thought of important.



The modal vary of urinary PCI in non-pregnant girls (with most variety of observations) was 60-80. The traditional vary of urinary PCI as decided by the non-parametric technique was 30–150.

[Table/Fig-1] compares the urinary protein, creatinine, and PCI of regular non–pregnant and pregnant girls. Important variations had been noticed in all of the three parameters. [Table/Fig-2] compares the urinary protein, creatinine, and PCI obtained within the three trimesters of regular being pregnant by ANOVA. Important variations had been noticed in all of the parameters.

A complete of 125 topics (non-pregnant and pregnant) had PCI worth lower than of 125, whereas 12 topics had PCI values larger than or equal to 150. [Table/Fig-3] compares the outcomes of the qualitative exams with the PCI values. The proportion of false positives was lowest with warmth coagulation check (10.2%), whereas the share of false negatives was barely greater with the warmth coagulation check, in comparison with the opposite exams.


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The reference PCI vary obtained from regular non-pregnant girls on this research was 30–150. Shaw et al., [13] have reported a PCI of lower than 125 in regular topics (excreting 150 mg or much less of urinary protein per day). Indians have much less muscle mass and subsequently excrete much less creatinine than individuals of Western origin, consequently displaying barely greater worth of PCI. Gupta and Gupta [14] have reported a spread of 37 to 247 in regular female and male topics of Indian origin, of the age group 18 to 67 years. The upper values reported by them could also be resulting from a number of of the next causes:

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Protein excretion elevated considerably in being pregnant [Table/Fig-1]. The rise was slight within the first trimester and extra within the second and the third trimesters. A potential research by Higby et al., [17] on 270 gravidas confirmed the higher restrict of urinary protein excretion of the 95% CI as 259.4 mg/d. That they had additional noticed that proteinuria was larger within the second half of the being pregnant, as in comparison with the primary. This commentary matches ours, and was fascinating as maximal will increase in glomerular filtration have already appeared earlier than mid being pregnant, and GFR may truly decline close to time period [18]. These observations recommend that both filtration or tubular reabsorption of proteins could change in late gestation [9].

Excretion of creatinine confirmed important improve in being pregnant as a result of improve in GFR. The PCI was considerably greater in pregnant state. The rise in PCI within the first trimester was not statistically important. Nonetheless, important will increase had been noticed within the second and third trimesters. The vary of PCI noticed within the pregnant girls (44.6-228.7) corresponds to a urinary protein excretion of as much as 250 mg/d. If the urine output was a couple of litre, the diluted urine would give the identical PCI.

When the higher restrict of regular urinary PCI was taken as 150, a correlation of qualitative exams with urinary PCI [Table/Fig-2] confirmed the bottom price of false positives by the warmth coagulation check (10.2%), whereas the opposite exams (together with dipsticks) confirmed a lot greater false constructive outcomes. False detrimental outcomes different from 1.5%–2.3%, with no discernible distinction between completely different qualitative exams. It subsequently seems that the warmth coagulation check can be utilized to display screen spot urine samples for the presence of protein. The PCI must be used as a confirmatory check, to rule out the opportunity of false positives. Because the warmth coagulation check is probably not constructive for the presence of small molecular weight proteins (as could also be excreted in case of renal tubular illness), the merest trace of any renal dysfunction requires estimation of urinary PCI, utilizing a protein detection technique that’s delicate for the small molecular weight proteins additionally.

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This research exhibits that the comfort of utilizing solely qualitative exams for urinary protein detection (dipsticks, sulfosalicylic acid check, Heller’s nitric acid check, or warmth coagulation check) could sacrifice the accuracy of analysis of proteinuria and consequently compromise the security of the affected person and her being pregnant. Whereas these exams could also be used within the routine examination of regular pregnant girls, urinary PCI could also be a greater possibility in topics in whom early and definitive analysis of proteinuria is essential e.g. in suspected circumstances of hypertensive pregnancies, preeclampsia, and HELLP (Hemolysis, Elevated Liver Enzymes, and Low Platelet Depend) syndrome.

Whereas looking literature associated to PCI in being pregnant and renal ailments, a large discrepancy in phrases and values was noticed. Whereas Shaw et al., [13] have used the time period protein creatinine index (PCI) and reported its worth as lower than 125 in regular topics; different authors have used completely different phrases with completely different formulae, offered in [Table/Fig-4]. Parag and Seedat [26] have calculated the PCI from the components:

PCI=Spot urinary protein (mg/L)/Spot urinary creatinine (μmol/Lx 10-4)

They’ve obtained values upto 24000 in sufferers with proteinuria.

Using completely different phrases and items underlines the urgency of creating a single unambiguous time period for relating urinary protein and creatinine concentrations. Because the time period protein creatinine index (as utilized by Shaw et al., [13]) seems to be unambiguous with no conflicting formulae for its calculation, we advocate its use for additional research.



The traditional vary of PCI in younger grownup (18–36 years) North Indian non–pregnant girls is 30–150. Protein focus in spot urine pattern can’t be used to rule out proteinuria if urine output is greater than 1 litre/day.

Using qualitative exams for urinary protein detection must be restricted to routine being pregnant verify up, and the affected person must be questioned in regards to the amount and frequency of urine handed in a day (regular/roughly 1 litre or extra). Because the warmth coagulation check correlates greatest with urinary PCI in spot urine samples, this can be used for screening urine samples for the presence of protein. Samples testing constructive with the warmth coagulation check must be rechecked by establishing the PCI to rule out false positives.

Protein creatinine index must be obtained instantly from spot urine samples on suspicion of any irregular situation throughout or after being pregnant.

There’s an pressing want to ascertain a single, unambiguous time period for relating urinary protein and creatinine concentrations.



“how much protein in urine is bad during pregnancy”

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