The microalbumin urine test is a simple and painless. The patient provides mid-stream urine samples, usually throughout the course of a day. The urine samples need to be "clean" and should not be contaminated. Don't touch the inside of the collection cup and wipe yourself carefully before collecting the urine sample. Make sure that toilet paper, hair, menstrual blood, etc... does not fall into the collection cup. Record the date/time of each sample.
The lab will test the urine for albumin. Normally (in people without kidney damage), there should be less than 30 mg of albumin present in the urine in 24 hours. If you have abnormal levels of albumin, your doctor may monitor and repeat the tests as well as order additional tests to assess the level of kidney damage.
People with type 2 diabetes often have a microalbumin urine test when they're first diagnosed with the disease, and then annually or as suggested by their doctor. The diagnosis of microalbuminuria indicates diabetic nephropathy, which is kidney disease.
Microalbuminuria treatment for diabetes consists of lowering blood pressure and prescribing medications to slow or prevent additional damage to the kidneys. More than one type of medication may be required, especially if you also have high blood pressure or high cholesterol levels. A heart-healthy diet, regular exercise, minimal salt intake, and limited amounts of protein are also recommended (a lot of protein is tough on the kidneys). Smokers should also quit smoking. These steps help preserve kidney function but also help to lower the risk of heart disease, since people with kidney damage are also at greater risk for heart disease. Diabetics should keep their blood glucose levels under tight control by following their diabetes treatment plan. This will provide the best opportunity to prevent or delay microalbuminuria and other complications of diabetes.