The following instructions will guide you in the proper collection of a 24-hour urine specimen. In some instances, you will be asked to collect two or three consecutive 24-hour urine samples.
- You should collect every drop of urine during each 24-hour period. It does not matter how much or little urine is passed each time, as long as every drop is collected.
- Begin the urine collection in the morning after you wake up, after you have emptied your bladder for the first time.
- Urinate (empty the bladder) for the first time and flush it down the toilet. Note the exact time (eg, 6:15 AM). You will begin the urine collection at this time.
- Collect every drop of urine during the day and night in an empty collection bottle. Store the bottle at room temperature or in the refrigerator.
- If you need to have a bowel movement, any urine passed with the bowel movement should be collected. Try not to include feces with the urine collection. If feces does get mixed in, do not try to remove the feces from the urine collection bottle.
- Finish by collecting the first urine passed the next morning, adding it to the collection bottle. This should be within ten minutes before or after the time of the first morning void on the first day (which was flushed). In this example, you would try to void between 6:05 and 6:25 on the second day.
If you need to urinate one hour before the final collection time, drink a full glass of water so that you can void again at the appropriate time. If you have to urinate 20 minutes before, try to hold the urine until the proper time.
Please note the exact time of the final collection, even if it is not the same time as when collection began on day one.
The bottle(s) may be kept at room temperature for a day or two, but should be kept cool or refrigerated for longer periods of time.
WHERE TO GET MORE INFORMATION
Your healthcare provider is the best source of information for questions and concerns related to your medical problem.
This article will be updated as needed on our web site (www.uptodate.com/patients). Related topics for patients, as well as selected articles written for healthcare professionals, are also available. Some of the most relevant are listed below.
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Patient information: Kidney stones in adults (The Basics)
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The following organizations also provide reliable health information.
- National Library of Medicine
- National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases