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Diseases reference index «Urination - excessive volume»

Excessive volume of urination means that you release abnormally large amounts of urine each day. The medical term for this condition is polyuria. 

Considerations

An excessive volume of urination for an adult is more than 2.5 liters of urine per day.

Polyuria is a fairly common symptom, which is often noticed when you have to get up to use the bathroom at night.

Causes

  • Drinking a large amount of fluids, particularly those containing caffeine or alcohol
  • Certain medications, especially diuretics
  • Diabetes mellitus
  • Diabetes insipidus
  • Psychogenic polydipsia, most common in women over age 30
  • Kidney failure
  • Sickle cell anemia
  • Imaging tests that involve injecting a special dye (contrast media) into your vein -- the amount of urine you produce may increase for up to 24 hours afterwards

Home Care

You should keep track of the following every day:

  • How much you drink
  • How often you urinate and how much urine you produce each time
  • How much you weigh (use the same scale every day)

When to Contact a Medical Professional

Call your doctor if you have excessive urination over several days, and it is not explained by medications or increase in fluids.

What to Expect at Your Office Visit

Your health care provider will perform a physical exam and ask you questions about your medical history and symptoms, including:

  • Time pattern
    • How long has you noticed this problem?
    • Do you produce the same amount of urine every day?
    • What time of day does the problem seem worse?
  • Quality
    • What color is the urine?
    • Do you have blood in your urine?
    • How many times each day do you urinate? What about at night?
    • Any problems controlling urine?
  • Aggravating factors
    • What makes the problem worse?
    • Does drinking large volumes of fluid make you produce more urine?
  • Relieving factors
    • Does anything help relieve the problem?
    • Does restricting fluid intake reduce the urine volume?
  • Other
    • What other symptoms do you have?
      • Do you have any pain or burning when urinating?
      • Do you have back or abdominal pain?
      • Have you had a fever?
      • Is bed wetting a problem?
    • What medications do you take?
    • Do you have a family history of diabetes or kidney problems?
    • Have you had a previous urinary tract infection?
  • Dietary factors
    • How much do you drink every day?
    • How much caffeine do you have each day?
    • How much alcohol do you drink each day?
    • How much salt do you use each day?

Tests that may be done include:

  • Blood glucose (sugar) test
  • Blood urea nitrogen test
  • Creatinine studies
  • Electrolytes
  • Fluid deprivation test (the intake of fluids is restricted to see if the urine volume decreases)
  • Osmolality blood test
  • Urine osmolality test
  • Urinalysis

Alternative Names

Polyuria

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