Discoloration of urine
The usual color of urine is straw-yellow. Abnormally-colored urine may be cloudy, dark, or blood-colored.
Abnormal urine color may be caused by infection, disease, medicines, or food you eat.
Cloudy or milky urine is a sign of a urinary tract infection, which may also cause a bad smell. Milky urine may also be caused by bacteria, crystals, fat, white or red blood cells, or mucus in the urine.
Dark brown but clear urine is a sign of a liver disorder such as acute viral hepatitis or cirrhosis, which causes excess bilirubin in the urine. It can also indicate severe dehydration or a condition involving the breakdown of muscle tissue known as rhabdomyolysis.
Pink, red, or lighter brown urine can be caused by:
Dark yellow or orange urine can be caused by:
Green or blue urine is due to:
See your health care provider if you have:
Your provider will perform a physical exam. This may include a rectal or pelvic exam. Your provider will ask you questions about your symptoms such as:
Tests that may be done include:
Elsamra SE. Evaluation of the urologic patient: history and physical examination. In: Partin AW, Domochowski RR, Kavoussi LR, Peters CA, eds. Campbell-Walsh-Wein Urology. 12th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2021:chap 1.
Gharavi AG, Landry DW. Approach to the patient with renal disease. In: Goldman L, Cooney KA, eds. Goldman-Cecil Medicine. 27th ed. Philadelphia, PA: Elsevier; 2024:chap 100.BACK TO TOP
Review Date: 7/1/2023
Reviewed By: Kelly L. Stratton, MD, FACS, Associate Professor, Department of Urology, University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center, Oklahoma City, OK. Also reviewed by David C. Dugdale, MD, Medical Director, Brenda Conaway, Editorial Director, and the A.D.A.M. Editorial team.
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