What Causes Green Urine, and When Should I See a Doctor?
Green urine with a blue tint may be a sign of a urinary tract infection (UTI). Having pure green urine is rare.
This article provides more detail about what can cause green urine. It also discusses when to contact a doctor, related symptoms, and more.
Green urine meaning
Green urine can occur as a result of an underlying health condition, such as a urinary tract infection. Your urine may also have a green hue after you have ingested certain foods or medications.
It is important to contact a doctor if you experience persistently green urine that you cannot explain or if you notice any other changes in your urine.
There are numerous possible causes of green urine. Depending on the cause of the color change, you may experience:
- light green urine
- green-tinted urine
- yellow-green urine
- bluish-green urine
The hue or intensity of the green color in your urine may help a doctor identify the cause.
Medications that contain phenol can cause green urine. These include
Other medications that can cause green urine include:
Certain health conditions can also cause the urine to turn green. These include:
- UTI: When a UTI occurs as a result of Pseudomonas aeruginosa, the pyocyanin and pyoverdin pigments that these bacteria produce can cause green urine.
- Jaundice: The bilirubin product biliverdin can cause urine to have a green hue.
- Hartnup disease: In people with this condition, the body cannot absorb certain amino acids properly. The resulting high levels in the urine can cause it to appear green.
- Blue diaper syndrome: This rare metabolic condition can cause blue or bluish-green urine.
Other possible causes of green urine include:
- food coloring
- eating certain green foods, such as asparagus
- Clorets breath fresheners
- water-soluble artificial dyes, such as methylene blue, which can mix with the yellow urochrome in urine to cause a green color
Doctors may use methylene blue as a dye in some medical procedures. This may temporarily cause your urine to appear blue.
Depending on the cause of green urine, you may experience other symptoms.
Examples of symptoms to look out for include:
- dysuria, which is a painful or burning sensation when urinating
- nocturia, which is an increased need to urinate during the night
- cloudy or dark urine
- urine that has a strong smell
- a more frequent or urgent need to urinate
- blood in your urine
It is important to contact a doctor if you experience any of these symptoms or notice other changes in your urine.
Contact a doctor as soon as you have concerns about changes in your urine. They may request a urine sample so that they can carry out tests to assist with the diagnosis.
Doctors may begin the diagnostic process by taking a full medical history and carrying out a physical examination.
They may also use urinalysis, testing your urine for infections or other medical conditions.
Questions the doctor might ask
The doctor may ask you a range of questions to get a better understanding of your symptoms. Examples include:
- When did you first notice green urine?
- Are you urinating more or less frequently than usual?
- Is your urine always this color?
- Does your urine have an odor?
- What medications are you taking?
- Have you had any recent surgical or diagnostic procedures?
- Is there blood in your urine?
- Do you have any other symptoms?
Depending on the cause, you may not require any treatment for green urine.
Other steps that can help reduce the symptoms of a UTI include:
- making sure you drink enough fluids
- taking pain relief medication, such as acetaminophen
- avoiding having sex
The doctor will be able to advise on any treatments they recommend. It is important to ask any questions you may have before beginning treatment.
Green urine may directly affect urine test results. It can interfere with chemical reagent strip tests for glucose and protein.
You may also experience complications from the underlying cause of green urine. It is important to contact a doctor as soon as you have concerns about changes in your urine so that they can reach an accurate diagnosis. This can help reduce the risk of complications.
Due to the presence of urochrome, urine is typically pale yellow. If your urine changes color, it may be a sign of an underlying condition.
It is important to contact a doctor if you notice changes in your urine. You can also find out more about what different urine colors may mean here:
Visit the articles below to learn more.
- 3 Things Your Urine Can Tell You About Your Health
- Blood in Urine
- Cloudy Urine: What Causes It and What to Do
- Frequent Urination
- Urine Odor
Green urine can occur as a result of an underlying condition, such as a UTI. It can also happen after ingesting certain medications or dyes.
In some cases, you may not require treatment for green urine. However, if it occurs as a result of an infection, the doctor may prescribe antibiotics.
Contact a doctor if you have green urine that you cannot explain or if you notice other changes in your urine. They may request a urine sample and carry out tests to reach an accurate diagnosis.