Source: NY Daily News
New York Mets pitcher Matt “The Dark Knight” Harvey’s explanation for the blood in his urine may sound like a gag from Seinfeld, but a New York University urology professor says there’s something to the pitcher’s wee tale.
Harvey told reporters in Port St. Lucie that the discoloration in his urine was due to the fact he doesn’t use the bathroom often enough.
“In some situations blood in the urine can be caused by urinary retention,” said Dr. James S. Wysock, an assistant professor at NYU’s Langone Medical Center. Wysock said bladder clots pass through the body when the patient urinates.
Wysock, who has not examined Harvey and spoke to the Daily News in general terms, said most healthy young people who temporarily have blood in their urine don’t have to worry about long-term consequences.
Blood in the urine can be caused by a number of factors, including bladder or urinary tract infections, kidney stones, strenuous exercise or trauma incurred during a game or practice.
“It’s very common for long-distance runners to have blood in their urine but it normally passes with 24 hours,” said Dr. Lewis Maharam, past president of the New York chapter of the American College of Sports Medicine and the Daily News’ “Running Doc” columnist.
Patients suffering from bladder cancer also experience blood in their urine, but Wysock said bladder cancer is not common in healthy young people like Harvey.
Harvey was cleared to pitch in Sunday’s season opener after passing the blood clot the pitcher said was linked to a bladder infection.
Both doctors said the condition usually clears up over time, although antibiotics may be required to treat an infection. “It is usually not serious,” Maharam said. “You put the patient on antibiotics and it clears up in a day or two.”
Harvey looked tired and pale as he told reporters that he experienced a couple of days of pain before the clot finally passed. He added:
“I guess I have to retrain my bladder to use the rest room a little bit more instead of holding it in.”
Harvey sounded like Jerry Seinfeld in an episode in which the comedian is detained by a shopping mall security guard who spotted him urinating behind a parked car. Seinfeld tells the guard he suffers from a life-threatening disease called uromysitisis poisoning. “Doctors have told me when I feel it the best thing to do is just release it,” Seinfeld told the guard. “Otherwise I could die.”
The Mets did not say if Harvey, like Seinfeld, would receive a public urination pass from the city.