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What is Diuresis?

Mary McMahon
Updated Mar 03, 2024
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Diuresis is an increase in the production of urine by the kidneys, which typically results in a corresponding increase in urine expelled by the body. When it happens without an accompanying increase of urination can cause severe medical problems. It has a wide range of causes and an assortment of treatment approaches, when treatment is required.

Certain types of exercise can cause diuresis, and it can also be caused by a wide range of health conditions and the use of certain drugs or medications. Coffee is an example of a well known diuretic drug, but many other substances can lead to increased urine production as well. The condition can also be caused by polydipsia, another way of saying intense thirst, as most people respond to thirst by drinking more, stimulating an accompanying increase in urination.

Diuresis is not necessarily cause for concern, depending on the root cause. For example, people at high altitude look for signs of diuresis to indicate that they are adapting well to the conditions at altitude, and it is also a common side effect of some prescription drugs. In these circumstances, people may be aware that they need to look out for diuresis, but it isn't cause to run to see a medical professional. For patients recovering from renal failure, increased urine production is often a welcome sign, indicating that the kidney function has radically improved.

In other instances, diuresis is a sign of a serious problem. It can indicate that the kidneys are malfunctioning, for example, and it is a common associated symptom of conditions like heart failure, diabetes, hypercalcemia, and an assortment of other conditions. In these instances, it is important for a person to see a healthcare professional to get to the root cause of the increased urine and to address it as needed. An assortment of anti-diuretic drugs can be administered, and treatment for the underlying condition is also strongly recommended.

There are several different types of diuresis, and it can be important to identify which type a patient is suffering from. In osmotic diuresis, for example, substances build up in the tubules of the kidneys, interfering with the reabsorption of water and causing an elevated level of water in the bloodstream, which in turn causes the kidneys to increase urine output. In rebound diuresis, patients produce a large amount of urine as they recover from renal failure. It can also be caused by exposure to cold or prolonged submersion, in which case it is known as immersion diuresis, as the body constricts blood vessels to conserve heat, leading the kidneys to produce more urine.

The Health Board is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.
Mary McMahon
By Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a The Health Board researcher and writer. Mary has a liberal arts degree from Goddard College and spends her free time reading, cooking, and exploring the great outdoors.

Discussion Comments
By anon934048 — On Feb 18, 2014

@anon164287: It seems that you have nocturia. You are experiencing thirst since you are excreting large amounts of dilute urine and therefore lowering your body amounts of sodium and other solutes.

You should get some blood tests done (Na, ADH). You should consider a low salt, low protein diet, which may provide some benefits. You may need to be put on thiazides. Hope this helps!

By anon261729 — On Apr 17, 2012

Anti-diuretic hormone, or ADH, is the hormone responsible for preventing excessive diuresis.

By anon164287 — On Mar 31, 2011

I have always urinated at least twice during the night and feel compelled to get a drink of water afterward. Now that I am older I urinate a number of times during the night sometimes every hour putting out sometimes 2000 cc in less than eight hours. There isn't any pain and the urine is very clear. What could be going on?

By anon100553 — On Jul 30, 2010

we have many types of diuretics and each one of them act on certain way, like thiazide by increasing Na and H2o excretion resulting in a decrease in cardiac output and renal blood flow by this way will reduce the blood volume.

By anon93307 — On Jul 03, 2010

if i have a type 2 diabetes and i know that i need to go to urinate almost every hour can i take or drink a slimming coffee that says may cause diuresis?

By anon43901 — On Sep 02, 2009

name the hormone that is produced in inadequate amounts resulting in excessive diuresis without high blood glucose levels.

By anon40099 — On Aug 06, 2009

Because diuresis increases the output of urine, your total blood volume decreases. Water, salts and other electrolytes are excreted during the process resulting in lower blood volume.

By Sars89 — On Mar 23, 2009

I would just like to know if anyone can tell me how does Diuresis reduce blood volume?


Mary McMahon
Mary McMahon

Ever since she began contributing to the site several years ago, Mary has embraced the exciting challenge of being a...

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