Overview and Objectives
Main Topic
Subtopic 1: Physical Examination of Urine
1.1, 1.2, 1.3
  Subtopic 1 Summary
Subtopic 2: Chemical Testing
2.1, 2.2, 2.3
  Subtopic 2 Summary
Subtopic 3: Microscopic Examination of Urine Sediment
3.1, 3.2
  Subtopic 3 Summary
Module Summary

Module Developer

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Activity 3.2
Microscopic Examination of Urine Sediment


Record in the comment section any problems encountered while practicing the procedure (or have a fellow student or the instructor evaluate your performance).

You must:

  1. Wash hands and put on gloves. Assemble equipment and materials.

  2. Practice microscopic identification of urine specimen using urine-control solutions.

  3. Obtain a urine sample.

  4. Pour 10-15 ml of well-mixed urine into a clean conical centrifuge tube (or tube from standardized system).

  5. Place filled tube in centrifuge, insert balance tube, and close lid (centrifuge must be balanced).

  6. Centrifuge at 1500-2000 rpm for five minutes.

  7. Remove tub form centrifuge after rotor stops spinning.

  8. Pour off supernatant urine, leaving approximately 0.5 ml of urine in tube (follow system instructions if applicable).

  9. Resuspend urine sediment by tapping the bottom of the tube.

  10. Place one drop of resuspended urine into a clean glass slide or into chamber provided with the system.

  11. Place coverslip over drop of urine if using glass slide.

  12. Place slide on microscope stage and focus using low-power (10x) objective and lowered condenser.

  13. Scan ten to fifteen low-power fields, count the number of casts per field, and record the average.

  14. Identify the type(s) of casts present and record.

  15. Rotate the high-power (40x) objective into position (raise condenser if necessary).

  16. Scan ten to fifteen fields on high power.

  17. Count the number of RBC, WBC, and epithelial cells per high-power field and record the average for each.

  18. Observe the sample for the presence of microorganisms, crystals, or mucus, and record if present. If crystals are present, identify type.

  19. Complete the urinalysis report form or worksheet.

  20. Discard specimen tube and pipet appropriately; avoid aerosol formation.

  21. Discard slide in puncture-proof biohazard container.

  22. Clean and return equipment to proper storage.

  23. Clean work area with surface disinfectant.

  24. Remove and discard gloves appropriately.

  25. Wash hands with hand disinfectant.

Use unlabeled illustrations or pre-prepared slides of urine sediment provided by the instructor to identify components of sediment not seen on slides

Evaluator Comments:






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