Urine albumin/creatinine ratio

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Also known as: UACR; urine microalbumin
Formal name: urine albumin to creatinine ratio

At a Glance

Why Get Tested?

To be screened for a possible risk of developing a kidney or cardiovascular disorder

When to Get Tested?

Annually after a diagnosis of diabetes or hypertension (high blood pressure)

Sample Required?

A urine sample

The Test Sample

What is being tested?

Albumin is a protein that is present in large amounts in the blood. When kidneys are functioning properly, only tiny amounts of albumin leaks through into the urine. In kidney failure (the last stage of a slow process of decline in kidney function), large amounts of protein are spilled into the urine. A long time before this amount of damage happens, small changes in the kidney allow very small but abnormal amounts of albumin to leak through, usually as a result of having diabetes. This condition is called microalbuminuria and the test that measures this very small amount of albumin is called urine albumin/creatinine ratio (UACR).

How is the sample collected for testing?

You will be asked to collect an early morning sample of urine.

The Test

Common Questions

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NOTE: This article is based on research that utilizes the sources cited here as well as the collective experience of the Lab Tests Online Editorial Review Board. This article is periodically reviewed by the Editorial Board and may be updated as a result of the review. Any new sources cited will be added to the list and distinguished from the original sources used.