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Urine 24-hour volume
The urine 24-hour volume test measures the amount of urine produced in a day.
Urine volume; 24-hour urine collection
How the Test is Performed
A 24-hour urine sample is needed.
- On day 1, urinate into the toilet when you get up in the morning.
- Afterwards, collect all urine in a special container for the next 24 hours.
- On day 2, urinate into the container when you get up in the morning.
- Cap the container. Keep it in the refrigerator or a cool place during the collection period.
- Label the container with your name, the date, the time of completion, and return it as instructed.
For an infant, thoroughly wash the area around the urethra. Open a urine collection bag (a plastic bag with an adhesive paper on one end), and place it on the infant. For males, place the entire penis in the bag and attach the adhesive to the skin. For females, place the bag over the labia. Diaper as usual over the secured bag.
This procedure may take a couple of attempts -- lively infants can move the bag, causing the urine to be absorbed by the diaper. Check the infant frequently and change the bag after the infant has urinated into it. Drain the urine from the bag into the container provided by your health care provider.
Deliver it to the laboratory or your health care provider as soon as possible upon completion.
How to Prepare for the Test
The health care provider will instruct you, if necessary, to stop taking any drugs that may interfere with the test results.
If the collection is being taken from an infant, some extra collection bags may be needed.
How the Test Will Feel
The test involves only normal urination, and there is no discomfort.
Why the Test is Performed
Urine volume is normally measured as a part of the creatinine clearance test, or any test that measures the amount of a substance eliminated in a day.
This test may also be done if you have polyuria (abnormally large volumes of urine), such as is seen in diabetes insipidus.
The normal range is 800 to 2000 milliliters per day (with a normal fluid intake of about 2 liters per day).
The examples above are common measurements for results of these tests. Normal value ranges may vary slightly among different laboratories. Some labs use different measurements or test different samples. Talk to your doctor about the meaning of your specific test results.
What Abnormal Results Mean
Disorders that cause reduced urine volume include dehydration, not enough fluid intake, or some types of chronic kidney disease.
Some of the conditions that cause increased urine volume include:
Landry DW, Bazari H. Approach to the patient with renal disease. In: Goldman L, Schafer AI, eds. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa: Saunders Elsevier; 2011:chap 116.
Reviewed By: David C. Dugdale, III, MD, Professor of Medicine, Division of General Medicine, Department of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine. Also reviewed by David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc.