Some microcrystal in human urine

Images made through a microscope. All subject types.

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Marek Mis
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Some microcrystal in human urine

Post by Marek Mis »

Perhaps is there anybody who nows what kind of substance creates theese crystals ?

Image

Rheinberg illumination
Lumipan - an old CZJ microscope
40 X Olympus splanachromat
2,5 X NFK

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »


curt0909
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Post by curt0909 »

Could be a few things but I would guess urea

Pau
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Post by Pau »

No idea, but I'm pretty sure that it crystalizes in the hexagonal system.

the picture is excellent. (better in blue that in yellowish tones :D )
Pau

rjlittlefield
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Post by rjlittlefield »

My reason for suggesting cystine is the comment in that first link ("Urinary crystals" from the vet school at Cornell University):
"Cystine crystals are flat colorless plates and have a characteristic hexagonal shape with equal or unequal sides."

The Rheinberg illumination in this photo clearly shows that Marek's crystal is not perfectly flat, but given the limited DOF of a 40X objective it must be nearly so (assuming the photo is not focus stacked). All of the other crystals shown in the article have quite different shapes from this.

--Rik

curt0909
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Post by curt0909 »

I stand corrected Rik. My mind immediately went to urea for some reason. After some reading I can see the hexagonal shape is indicative of crystine like you suggested.

Marek Mis
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Post by Marek Mis »

Thank you all for nice comments.

Rik,
I think you are right if about identification of the substance created my microcrystal. I've looked over the site you sent in your post and cystine seems to be the best choice. The shape of its crystals suits to mine.

Marek

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Post by rjlittlefield »

By the way, to be clear, I'm just matching shapes and interpreting other people's words. I have no personal experience with these sorts of crystals.

--Rik

Tom Jones
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Post by Tom Jones »

Marek,

Nice photo! Unfortunately the Rheinberg makes it difficult to be sure it's cystine. They're a pretty rare find. I've been doing microscopic urinalysis (fortunately, among other things :roll:) for many, many years and have seen them only a few times.

Cystinuria (cystine in the urine) predisposes one the the formation of kidney stones, so it might be a good idea for the person whose urine the crystals are in to get a urinalysis done, and maybe a chemical analysis for urine cystine. Certainly a discussion with the family physician would be in order during the next visit.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMH0001386

Tom

RogelioMoreno
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Post by RogelioMoreno »

Very nice picture!

Rogelio

Marek Mis
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Post by Marek Mis »

Tom and Rogelio thank you for comments.

Tom,
your post has slightly horrified me :shock:
But I think one of my favourite beverages ;-) will help me in fight with potential kidney stones.

But saying seriously I don't think now it is cystine. After your post I've done my own "investigation" in Google resources and I noticed the cystine crystals are quite flat. My crystal is more three-dimensional. It has additional side walls which connect themselves at the top of the crystal. Apart from this I've found the information that such crystals can derive from some pharmaceuticals.

Marek

Tom Jones
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Post by Tom Jones »

Hi Marek,

If they're not essentially flat plates, the crystals are not cystine. You're quite right about the possibility of such crystals being from pharmaceuticals too. Most urine crystals not readily identified are from drugs of one kind or another, and as a result are of no consequence.

Tom

Marek Mis
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Post by Marek Mis »

Thank for your comment, Tom.

Marek

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