In acute viral infections, the virus is usually present in the blood, throat and faeces, but in some cases also in cerebrospinal fluid and urine. Particularly in the case of virus-related infections (especially adenoviruses) in the genitourinary system, viruses can be detected well in the urine.

Usually, viruses are detected in the urine in three ways:

1. Detection of inclusion bodies in the cells of the urinary sediment
2. Specific immunofluorescence of cells
3. Isolation of the virus in tissue cultures

Viral infections in which viruria is more important are:

  • Measles virus
  • Human cytomegalovirus
  • Human adenoviruses
  • Polyomavirus-associated nephropathy (PAN)
  • Enteroviruses (newborn: hepatitis and myocarditis)

Depending on the infection, further transmission by urine can be more or less important. Essential ways are:

  • Lubrication infection
  • Inhalation of the urine aerosol during urication (droplet infection)
  • Drying and spreading of viruses via the air

In the case of animal viruses, these are transmitted by contact with the urine of host animals or by inhalation of the dried host. For example hantaviruses and arena viruses.

With regard to corona viruses (MERS-CoV, e.g. COVID-19, SARS), there are indeed case reports in which viral RNA of MERS-CoV has been found in the respiratory tract, blood, urine and stool. Although the MERS corona virus is particularly prevalent in the lower respiratory tract, small amounts of virus have been detected in these samples. Recent studies of COVID-19 patients have also shown an impact on kidney function in certain patient groups, including acute kidney damage and proteinuria. Currently, the connection is being examined in more detail in studies – especially which groups are particularly at risk.

With regard to Medipee Technology, there is still no concrete test for these viruses. This is part of development work. However, the nationwide measurement of urine temperature would make it possible to monitor the pandemic spread of fever-causing viruses. Infection nests could thus be located at an early stage. If the association of positive values in the urine of albumin, erythrocytes, leukocytes and COVID-19 is confirmed in certain patient groups, urine monitoring via the Medipee System would also be an effective approach.

See also: Blood in the urine, Medications, Did you already know?