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Ask Dr. D. Love Your Own Question
Dr. D. Love
Dr. D. Love, Doctor
Category: Medical
Satisfied Customers: 18306
Experience:  Family Physician for 10 years; Hospital Medical Director for 10 years.
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What does it mean that my creatinine and urea nitrogen (measured

Customer Question

What does it mean that my creatinine and urea nitrogen (measured in my urine analysis) are quite low and what can I do to normalize it? I took a 24 hour urine collection for analysis and this is what they found: Creatinine result: 580 (the normal range according to the report is(NNN) NNN-NNNN, and Urea Nitrogen result: 2600 (norm is 12000-20000).
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Medical
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 6 years ago.

Was the levels in your blood also checked?

Was the creatinine clearance, a measure of kidney function, calculated?

If so, are they normal?


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
The results include a CBC with differential platelet, 24 hour urine analysis, and urinalysis but I don't see where there are any results for creatinine and urea nitrogen in my blood.

Here's a little more of what it says, if this might be of any help:

Urea and Creatininte 24 Hr Ur
Creatinine, Urine 23.2 (norm: not estab.)
Creatinine, Ur 24hr 580 (norm.(NNN) NNN-NNNN
Urea Nitrogen, U 104 (norm: not established0)
Urea Nitrogen 2600 (norm is 12000-20000).

Urinalysis, Routine
Urinalysis Gross Exams
Specific Gravity 1.003 (LOW) (norm: 1.005-1.030)
PH 7.0

The report contain other results too such as Urobilinogen, Semi-Qn 0.2 (norm: 0.0-1.9), and Creatine, Serum 0.2 (norm: 0.3-0.9).

Hope this helps and hope you can help me!
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 6 years ago.

Thank you for the additional information.


The creatinine and urea are primarily used as a measure of kidney function, but if there is kidney disease, the level of these labs will increase. In general, the creatinine is made by the normal metabolic activity in the muscles and released into the blood stream then filtered by the kidneys and excreted into the urine. If the kidneys are not functioning properly, then the level in the blood increases until the level is sufficient to allow for the creatinine to be cleared at the same rate as the production. In steady state, the total amount of creatinine in the urine over 24 hours will equal the amount of creatinine produced by the muscles. The urea is similarly metabolized, but is produced by any tissue that metabolizes protein, so is largely formed by the muscles, but is produced by other tissues as well.


In your case the total amount of creatinine and urea is low and suggests that there is a decreased production of creatinine and urea. The low serum creatine is another name for creatinine in the blood, but the level is only slightly low. In general, a low creatinine and urea level is not concerning, and certainly not as concerning as an elevated creatinine and urea. The most common cause of this is in a person with lower muscle mass. Therefore, if it is desired to correct the levels, the appropriate step would be muscle building exercises to increase muscle mass.


The fact that you are drinking a large amount of fluids will decrease the concentration of the creatinine and urea in the urine, although it would not decrease the total amount of creatinine and urea over 24 hours. It also will cause the low specific gravity. None of these are concerning. Drinking a large amount of fluids may be concerning if it affects the level of electrolytes in the blood, but if there are no other abnormalities in lab work, then there is no concern about the drinking of large amount of fluids.


Customer: replied 6 years ago.
Thank you for your answer. The problem I have is if I don't drink the 5 liters per day I CAN NOT sleep at night (very frustrating!). Secondly, my knees, ankles, hands and face begin to swell. And thirdly, my bowel movements become hard and scarce. There is something very abnormal about this and not only this, but it prevents me from having a normal life because I have to carry around liters of waters with me all day and if I miss even a glass of it, I am unable to sleep at night.
Expert:  Dr. D. Love replied 6 years ago.

These findings do not explain the reason for the need to drink large amounts of fluid. The evaluation of the water drinking requires that there be blood work of the electrolytes, as the body handles water and electrolytes together. Abnormal electrolytes may be related to chronic heart, liver, thyroid, or adrenal disease, although the electrolytes, chemistry profile, and findings on physical examination would guide the next step in the evaluation.