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TECH114-0906: The Complete Urinalysis

Joyce Knoll, VMD; PhD, DACVP, Cheryl Stockman, MT (ASCP)

September 13-October 28, 2006
Real Time Sessions: Wednesday evenings September 20 and 27, October 4, 11, and 18, 2006; 9:00-11:00pm ET (USA)


Urinalysis is most accurate when performed soon after sample collection, and veterinarians often rely on veterinary technicians to perform this analysis. This course is designed to provide the veterinary technician with in-depth, useable knowledge on how to perform a urinalysis, as well as information about factors that affect accuracy of results. In addition, the course will use a case-based approach to introduce information on interpretation of urinalysis results in the context of clinical signs and other supporting laboratory abnormalities (e.g. CBC and chemistry profile).

Bayer Animal Health will be supplying their newly published Urine Sediment Reference Guide free for participants in this course and fees for shipping are already included in the registration fee. The course will close to enrollment on August 30, 2006 so we may verify and mail out these texts for you prior to the course open date; please be sure to include your mailing address in your enrollment form or email

This course will consist of five (5), two (2) hour real-time sessions, detailed presentations with slides when appropriate, and library materials provided on all topics. There will be multiple choice homework quizzes designed to enhance course effectiveness and material retention as well as interactive message board discussions.

Upon completion of this course, participants should be able to:

  1. perform chemistry tests on a urine sample, utilizing both Dipstix� and other confirmatory tests.
  2. perform a microscopic examination of stained urine sediment and begin developing ability to evaluate unstained urine sediment.
  3. avoid factors that may result in urinalysis artifacts.
  4. interpret common abnormalities in a urinalysis.
  5. understand how the combination of a urinalysis, CBC and chemistry profile can be used to diagnose common diseases in domestic animals.
Additional Recommended Texts (available through
A Handbook of Routine Urinalysis. Sister Laurine Graff; J.B. Lippincott Co, Philadelphia, 1983.


Week 1 : How to Perform a Urinalysis and the effects of Sample Collection
Content: This section of the course will go through the steps of a urinalysis (with a few possibly surprising recommendations along the way), and will review how sample collection can affect results. The emphasis during this session will be on chemical analysis of urine and specific gravity determination. The rationale for using tests such as Ictotest tablets or the sulfasalicyclic acid test to confirm Dipstix® results will be discussed, as well as the "how's" and "why's" of the new Heska® microalbuminemia test.

Week 2 : Microscopic evaluation of Urine Sediment
Content: This section will use images to illustrate common and uncommon (but clinically significant) abnormalities that can be found in urine sediment. The discussion will cover common pitfalls when looking at urine sediment, pros and cons of using Sedi-stain� and the clinical significance of certain findings. Guidelines for identification of elements in unstained preparations, and information on additional techniques that can be used to confirm the presence of bacteria or aid in identification of unknown crystals will be provided.

Week 3 : Interpretation of Urine Sediment Abnormalities
Content: In this section we will use a series of clinical cases to illustrate how some urine sediment abnormalities can be useful in making a diagnosis. Abnormalities to be discussed will include hematuria, pyuria, casts, and pathologic crystals.

Week 4 : Interpretation of Urine Chemistry Abnormalities
Content: In this section we will use a series of clinical cases to illustrate how some urine chemistry abnormalities (in association with findings in the sediment) can be useful in making a diagnosis. Abnormalities to be discussed will include proteinuria, hemoglobinuria, myoglobinuria, glucosuria, and bilirubinuria.

Week 5 : Interpretation of Specific Gravity in conjunction with Serum Chemistry Abnormalities
Content: This session will introduce the concept of azotemia, its causes and its classification scheme. Through a series of cases, we will discuss how urine specific gravity can be used to assess kidney function and distinguish pre-renal azotemia, as a result of blood loss or dehydration, from renal azotemia caused by kidney disease.


Library materials will be made available prior to the topic week so participants will have plenty of time to prepare for the real time sessions and discussion.

Message board discussions regarding the topic presented will begin on the day the course opens and continue for one week following the last real time session. These discussions will be held in the VSPN CE course area.

$193 ($174.00 early bird special if registered before August 16, 2006). Registration will close on or before August 30, as soon as the maximum number of participants is reached so register early!
Students of AVMA accredited Veterinary Technician Programs or Canadian approved VT programs may be eligible to receive a reduced rate for this course of $97.00 (upon verification of student status)
* VT students, please include your program directors name, school, and school phone number) in the comments section of the CE registration form. Your registration will be delayed if this information is not included.

** Minimal computer requirements for participating in VSPN and VPSNCE:

** For More Information on VSPN's upcoming CE Courses, check out


  1. Each enrollee must individually be a registered member of VSPN ( Membership in VSPN is free.
  2. To enroll in any VSPN CE course click on the ENROLL NOW link below the course title on the right side of the page at
  3. Each enrollee must be able to receive emails from and addresses. This is our major form of communication with participants. It is highly recommended that course participants use their own, personal emails rather than clinic/hospital email addresses.
  4. VIN Member veterinarians SHOULD NOT register for their staff. Please have the staff member register through VSPN. Please email if you have questions.

Note: "This program was submitted (but not yet approved) to the AAVSB's RACE program for continuing education. Please contact the AAVSB's RACE program at should you have any comments/suggestions regarding this program's validity or relevance to the veterinary profession." (Attendees are encouraged to check with their licensing jurisdiction(s) for information regarding recognition by their board.) This course has also been submitted for approval for continual education units toward CVPM requirements by the VHMA.

COURSE WITHDRAWAL AND REFUND POLICY: Withdrawal prior to the listed start date of a course entitles the registrant to a complete refund or a credit toward a future VIN CE course, whichever is preferred. Withdrawal within 1 week after the listed start date (i.e. including no more than one real-time session) entitles the registrant to a credit toward any future VIN CE course. (Does not apply to courses with only one real-time session.) After the first real-time session, a registrant may withdraw due to special circumstances and receive prorated credit towards a future VIN course. These requests will be handled on an individual basis. The amount of the prorated credit will be determined based on 65% of the time remaining in the course at the time of withdrawal. It is not possible to withdrawal retroactively. Note: To ensure rapid handling of your request for withdrawal, we recommend that you call the VIN office at 1-800-700-INFO.
Nanette R. Walker Smith, RVT, CVT
VSPN Content Director or


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