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Definition of «Diuretic»

Diuretic

Diuretic: Anything that promotes the formation of urine by the kidney. (The word "diuretic" comes from a combination of the Greek "dia-", thoroughly + "ourein", to urinate = to urinate thoroughly).

Diuresis may be due to a huge number of causes including metabolic conditions such as diabetes mellitus (in which the increased glucose level in the blood causes water to be lost in the urine); substances in food and drink (such as coffee, tea, and alcoholic beverages); and specific diuretic drugs.

All diuretic drugs -- which are usually called, more simply, diuretics -- cause a person to "lose water" but they do so by diverse means, including:

  • Inhibiting the kidney's ability to reabsorb sodium, thus enhancing the loss of sodium in the urine. And when sodium is lost in the urine, water goes with it. (This type of diuretic is called a high-ceiling diuretic or a loop diuretic).
  • Enhancing the excretion of both sodium and chloride in the urine so that water is excreted with them. This is how the thiazide diuretics work.
  • Blocking the exchange of sodium for potassium, resulting in excretion of sodium and potassium but relatively little loss of potassium. These diuretics are therefore termed potassium sparing diuretics.

Some diuretics work by still other mechanisms. And some diuretics have other effects and uses such as in treating hypertension.

Read more information on a number of diuretics including Aldactone (spironolactone), Dyazide (triamterene), Hydrodiuril (hydrochlorothiazide), Lasix (furosemide), and Maxzide (triamterene).

For More Information «Diuretic»

  • diuretic: Definition from Answers.com

    Library > Literature & Language > Dictionary ( dī ' ə-rĕt ' ĭk ) adj. Tending to increase the discharge of urine. n. A substance or drug that tends to increase ...

  • Diuretics & High Blood Pressure: Uses, Side Effects, and More

    Here are some general guidelines if you're taking a diuretic: Before a diuretic is prescribed, tell your doctor if you are taking any other medications that may have been ...

  • Diuretic definition - Diuretic

    Diuretic: Anything that promotes the formation of urine by the kidney. (The word "diuretic" comes from a combination of the Greek "dia-", thoroughly + "ourein", to urinate ...

  • Diuretics - MayoClinic.com - Mayo Clinic

    Which diuretic is best for you depends on your health and the condition being treated. Examples of thiazide diuretics include: Chlorothiazide

  • What are Diuretics?

    Diuretics are substances that encourage urination. Used for everything from edema to heart problems, too much of a diuretic can...

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