Microscopic Analysis of Urine

Microscopic analysis is one step in urinalysis in which a urine sample is examined under a microscope. The urine sample is analyzed for cells, crystals, casts, and microorganisms. Microscopic analysis is often used to confirm the findings from the macroscopic and chemical analyses or add more information to a diagnosis.


  1. Prepare a urine sample of 10 to 15 mL.
  2. Spin the urine sample in a centrifuge for 3 to 5 minutes.
  3. Discard the supernatant to the remaining sediment, the pellet.
  4. Resuspend the pellet by gently tapping/flicking the tube
  5. Place one drop of the sample on a microscope slide using a pipette.
  6. Cover the sample with a clean cover glass.
  7. Place the slide under the microscope lens.
  8. Scan the whole slide under low magnification.
  9. Increase the magnification to get a closer look.

You can look at the urine sample with bright-field or phase contrast lenses. Bright-field is used for evaluating colors and clusters, and phase contrast usually gives better visibility for transparent objects.

Under the microscope, you might find: