Leukocytes in Urine: An In-Depth Look

Leukocytes in Urine: An In-Depth Look

Leukocytes, also known as white blood cells, are a crucial part of the body’s immune system. They help fight off infections and diseases1. When leukocytes are found in urine, it’s often a sign of a problem somewhere in your urinary tract2. This condition is known as leukocyturia3.

Understanding Leukocyturia

Leukocyturia is characterized by the presence of leukocytes in urine3. Normally, these cells should remain in the bloodstream. However, when an infection or other unwanted presence occurs in a specific area, white blood cells will move toward that area to defend it4. For this reason, higher levels of leukocytes may be a sign of an infection4.

Causes of Leukocyturia

High leukocyte levels in urine could be a sign of various conditions42:

Symptoms and Diagnosis

If leukocytes are present in your urine, any symptoms will depend on the condition causing them to accumulate there4. Common symptoms include pain or burning during urination, frequent urination, cloudy or foul-smelling urine, and pain in your belly, back, or side2.

Diagnosis typically involves a urinalysis or urine test. High levels of white blood cells suggest inflammation somewhere in your urinary tract, which could indicate an infection4.

Treatment and Prevention

Treatment for leukocyturia depends on its underlying cause. For instance, UTIs are typically treated with antibiotics2. It’s important to complete the full course of antibiotics to ensure all bacteria are eliminated and prevent reinfection2.

Prevention strategies include drinking plenty of water to flush bacteria out of your urinary system and not holding in urine for too long as this can increase bacterial growth4.


Leukocytes in urine are typically a sign of an underlying issue with your urinary tract. If you suspect you have this condition, it’s important to consult with a healthcare professional for proper diagnosis and treatment.

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