Low Urine Output: Symptoms & Signs

  • Medical Author:
    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD

    Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.

Low urine output, or no urine output, occurs in the setting of kidney failure as well as in urinary obstruction. As the kidneys fail or become compromised in their ability to function, the kidneys lose the ability to regulate fluids and electrolytes and to remove waste products from the body. Additionally, red blood cell production (which is normally driven by a substance produced in the kidneys) decreases. Low urine output also occurs when there is a decreased blood supply to the kidney, such as occurs with dehydration or excessive blood loss. Obstruction of outflow of the urine, either due to tumors, enlargement of the prostate, or bladder problems can also reduce urine output. Reduced urine output as a result of kidney failure can be acute, as with toxins or sepsis, or chronic. Chronic renal failure develops over time and can result from poorly controlled diabetes or hypertension.

Related Symptoms & Signs

REFERENCE:

Kasper, D.L., et al., eds. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 19th Ed. United States: McGraw-Hill Education, 2015.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 3/23/2017
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