Osmotic Diuresis and Diabetes: Why It Happens?

Osmotic diuresis occurs when substances in the blood accumulate in the tubules of the kidney, reducing the reabsorption of water in the kidneys, thereby increasing urine output. Osmosis refers to the movement of fluids through porous membranes. The fluid, often water, tends to move from a more dilute concentration on one side of the membrane to a less dilute concentration on the other side, effectively equalizing concentrations on both sides of the membrane. Diuresis is an increase in the discharge of urine.

Why it Happens

The primary cause of osmotic diuresis is an elevated blood glucose (hyperglycemia) which is sometimes the result of poorly controlled diabetes. When there is excess glucose in the blood, and it passes through the kidneys for filtering, the excess glucose accumulates in the tubules within the kidneys.

Once there, it blocks the reabsorption of water, leading to an increased concentration of water in the bloodstream. The kidneys then act to remove the excess water, causing increased urine production and increased frequency in urination. Patients who suffer from diuresis stand to lose significant amounts of fluid as well as essential mineral salts. Symptoms of dehydration may be present. Another cause of osmotic diuresis is taking certain medications (e.g. Mannitol.)

How Osmotic Diuresis is Diagnosed

There are no specific tests for osmotic diuresis, other than a urinalysis to look for changes in the urine. Diagnosis of osmotic diuresis is done by a physician taking into consideration all symptoms. If the patient is diabetic and producing larger than normal amounts of urine, then osmotic diuresis would be considered.

Symptoms of Osmotic Diuresis

The primary symptoms of osmotic diuresis are an increase in the quantity of urine and the frequency of passing urine. Some patients also experience some pain or discomfort in the genital region, as a result of increased urination. Other symptoms include an increased level of thirst; fatigue (the result of the loss of essential minerals and salts from the body); and disturbed sleep, as the urge to urinate can cause the patient to wake several times during the night.

Treatment of Osmotic Diuresis

Treatment of osmotic diuresis concurrent with diabetes involves bringing blood glucose back to normal levels. If the cause is taking certain medications, then these drugs should be discontinued.

Sources: Wisegeek, HxBenefit
Photo: Pexels

Get a Free Diabetes Meal Plan

Get a free 7-Day Diabetes Meal Plan from Constance Brown-Riggs who is a Registered Dietitian-Certified Diabetes Educator and who is also a national spokesperson for the American Dietetic Association.

Just enter in your email below to download your free Diabetes Meal Plan.

By clicking Submit, you agree to send your info to InformationAboutDiabetes.com who may contact you with updates and information and we agree to use it according to our privacy policy.

More Articles

Limiting our intake of highly processed foods, and eating more whole and lightly processed fare can boost our nutrient and fiber intake, lower...

Chamomile tea has long been prized for its calming properties, but few people realize it’s also beneficial for glucose regulation. Traditionally,...

Today, the healing benefits of essential oils are more than the claims of ancient tradition and alternative medicine. They are increasingly the...

The different sugar content of fruits can be confusing when you are trying to manage your...

There is nothing close to a one-size-fits-all exercise program for those with diabetic peripheral neuropathy. The best general advice is to...

More Articles

With such a marked increase in the number of new diabetes cases, more people are wondering if type 1 diabetes...

Keeping your blood sugar levels under control can be tough. There are so many factors that can affect blood sugar, like exercise, food, illness,...

Today, the healing benefits of essential oils are more than the claims of ancient tradition and alternative medicine. They are increasingly the...

Stomach aches and other gastrointestinal pains can be signs of a bigger problem. One such problem for diabetics is gastroparesis, or delayed...

Two of the most common symptoms of diabetes are increased thirst and increased urine production. These symptoms are so prevalent in diabetics that...

People with diabetes are about twice as likely to experience heart disease as those without the condition, making cardiovascular health a critical...

Pilates is an exercise method proven to improve flexibility, strength, coordination, muscular stamina, balance, and posture. Many Pilates...

All diabetics know that maintaining proper blood sugar levels is the lifeline...

It can be difficult enough to get on stage and make a roomful of strangers laugh, but for comedians suffering from type 1 or type 2 diabetes,...

Most people with insulin-dependent diabetes use syringes and lancets every day. However, many of them do not know how to dispose of these...

People with type 1 and type 2 diabetes have successfully competed in the Olympic Games. Their amazing stories prove that diabetes is no match for...

If your child has diabetes, you want him or her to be safe while in school and to have the same educational opportunities as other children....

Explaining diabetes to children can seem like a daunting task, but in reality, it is no more difficult than discussing anything else important....

Diabetes is a complex disease, affecting virtually every part of the body. The damage it does, to nerve endings, blood vessels, organs, and the...

The American Diabetes Association estimates that more than 7 million people in the United States have diabetes but don’t know it yet. These people...