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Can Blood in Urine Go Away on its Own?

Can Blood in Urine Go Away on its Own?

Our content is not intended nor recommended as a substitute for medical advice by your doctor. Use for informational purposes only.

Key facts:

  • Blood in the urine is not a symptom to ignore.
  • Any unexplained hematuria should be investigated by your doctor (even after it goes away).
  • Blood in the urine can go on its own, especially in certain cases such as exercise-induced hematuria, minor trauma, and the passage of a stone.
  • However, hematuria may persist or recur, like urinary stones, untreated UTI, urinary bladder cancer, etc.
  • Always consult your urologist or nephrologist, and don’t wait for blood in urine to go on its own.

How serious is blood in urine?

Blood in the urine (hematuria) occurs due to various causes (see the next section). The conditions that lead to hematuria range from simple causes (such as exercise) to very serious causes, such as bladder or kidney cancer.

Most blood causes in the urine are not serious (such as UTI, stones, etc.). However, any hematuria should be investigated for dangerous causes (such as bladder cancer).

When to worry:

  • Painless blood in urine in old age (>50 years), especially in male smokers (high risk of malignancy).
  • Worsening pain (renal colic or bladder pain).
  • Blood clots with darkening hematuria that doesn’t improve after a few urinations.
  • Blood clots that don’t easily pass during urination.
  • Development of urine retention.
  • Fever.
  • Pallor, shortening of breath, fast heartbeats, or fainting attacks.

Causes of blood in the urine (hematuria)?

The table below summarizes all the possible causes of hematuria (reference).

1. benign or malignant kidney tumors.
2. Glomerulonephritis (IgA nephropathy, Thin basement membrane disease, or Alport syndrome).
3. Adult Polycystic Kidney Disease (APKD)
4. Medullary sponge kidney.
5. Pyelonephritis (kidney infection).
6. Kidney distension with urine (hydronephrosis).
7. Increased excretion of calcium or uric acid in urine.
8. Severe (malignant) hypertension.
9. Obstruction of the renal artery or renal vein.
10. Arteriovenous malformation (abnormal blood vessels of the kidney).
11. Papillary necrosis (with sickle cell disease).
1. Malignant ureteric tumor.
2. Stone ureter.
3. Stricture (narrowing) in the ureter.
4. Polyp.
5. Post-surgery (fistula between the iliac vessels and the ureter or ureteroiliac fistula).
1. UB cancer (most serious).
2. Cystitis (UTI).
3. UB stone.
4. UB radiation.
1. BPH (benign prostatic hypertrophy).
2. Prostatic cancer.
3. Prostatic procedures such as taking a biopsy or operations.
4. Trauma during urinary catheter insertion.
5. Urethritis (inflammation of the urethritis).
6. Urethral diverticulum.
1. UTI (infection with bacteria, viruses, or fungi).
2. Tuberculosis.
3. Schistosomiasis
4. Trauma.
5. Exercise-induced hematuria.
6. Recent interventions such as lithotripsy.
7. Bleeding disorders or anticoagulant medications.
8. Endometriosis of the urinary tract.
1. Menstruation.
2. Drugs (Pyridium, phenytoin, rifampin, nitrofurantoin).
3. Red pigments in urine as myoglobinuria
4. Beeturia.

The most common causes of hematuria include:

  • UTI (urinary tract infection).
  • Stones (kidney, ureter, or bladder stones).
  • Bladder cancer.
  • Exercise-induced hematuria.
  • Glomerular diseases.
  • Trauma.
  • Endometriosis.

Can blood in urine go away on its own?

Depending on the cause and the severity of hematuria, the blood in urine may or may not go away on its own. For example, Exercise-induced hematuria often goes away after you stop exercising.

In other conditions, the hematuria may or may not go away on its own, depending on the severity of the condition.

For example, kidney stones may cause an episode or hematuria while passing through the urinary tract.

The fate of hematuria in selected conditions:

Condition Does blood in urine go away?
1. UTI in most cases, the blood in urine goes away on its own. Treatment of UTI helps more rapid improvement in hematuria2. Stones hematuria often comes and doesn’t go away on its own unless the stones pass with urine or are removed by your doctor.
3. Exercise-induce hematuria It often goes away on its own a few days after stopping strenuous exercise.
4. UB Cancer The hematuria is often painless and comes and goes over time. It may progress in severity over time.
5. Trauma It depends on the severity and extent of the trauma. Minor trauma from catheterization may cause transient hematuria that resolves within hours or a few days.
6. Glomerular diseases The hematuria may persist for weeks or months if not treated.
7. Endometriosis Cyclic hematuria (blood in urine goes with the menstruation for a few days every month).

How long does it take for blood in urine to go away on its own?

In most cases, hematuria is often mild and goes away within a few hours to a few days. However, the exact time hematuria takes to go away depends on several factors, such as the causes, the severity, the presence of urinary anatomical abnormalities, and treatment efficacy.

Expected times hematuria takes to go away in selected cases:

Condition How long does hematuria take to go away
1. UTI without treatment, hematuria may persist for several days or weeks. Treatments improve hematuria within hours or a few days.
2. Stones untreated stones may cause hematuria that comes and goes. With treatment (stone removal), hematuria often improves rapidly within a few days.
3. Exercise-induce hematuria It takes hours to a few days (a maximum of a week) after stopping exercise for hematuria to go away.
4. UB Cancer It doesn’t go away on its own.
5. Trauma depending on the type and extent of trauma. Minor trauma may cause a single attack of bloody urine. Major trauma may cause persistent hematuria.
6. Glomerular diseases It often takes weeks or months to go away on its own.
7. Endometriosis often goes away after a few days. But recur every month.

A final word: Don’t ignore hematuria.

As you learned, hematuria occurs due to various conditions in the urinary tract.

If you have blood in your urine without an obvious cause, you must arrange an appointment with your doctor. Please don’t wait for hematuria to go away on its own unless your doctor advises you to wait.

  • Evidence-based
  • Written by a doctor.

MD, Internal Medicine and Nephrology specialist.
Dr. Esraa A. Magid
Dr. Esraa A. MagidAuthor