Microscopy of urine sediment is a simple and inexpensive, but often overlooked procedure. With practice, it can contribute to swift, correct diagnosis of suspected kidney and urinary tract disease.
With the development of a wide range of blood tests and multiple test strips (dipsticks) for testing urine, urine microscopy often seems to be forgotten both in everyday use and in the literature on diagnosis of kidney and urinary tract disease. However, existing European guidelines stress the importance of urine examination, including the use of microscopy (1). In the following, a brief summary of these guidelines is illustrated with case histories showing what we may miss by not using a microscope on urine samples.