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The Causes, Treatments, and Symptoms of Oliguria

The Causes, Treatments, and Symptoms of Oliguria

The symptoms of oliguria are literally symptoms of an underlying condition. That is because oliguria in itself is not a disease. Learn more in this text!

Chronic renal failure (CRF) is the progressive, everlasting and irreversible lack of the kidneys’ glomerular filtration rate over a variable time period. Oliguria is considered one of the symptoms of CRF, and today we’re going to let you know in regards to the causes, treatments, and symptoms of oliguria.

In line with epidemiological data, 17.8% of adults could suffer from this condition. Nonetheless, that number increases to 45% within the elderly. Oliguria is mostly defined as a decrease in urine output (diuresis). 

Along with chronic kidney failure, it may even be an indication of acute kidney disease, dehydration, acute tubular necrosis, and lots of other etiologic agents.

Keep reading to seek out out more about this clinical condition.

What’s oliguria?

A one that drinks 64 ounces of water a day should go to the lavatory, on average, every 4 hours to urinate. Their kidneys are constantly working to purify the blood, so our bodies produce about 27 to 68 ounces of urine a day.

In line with the Navarra University Clinic, oliguria is the reduction of urinary volume below the essential level. Basically, experts say it’s a clinical issue while you’re only producing .01 ounces per minute, or lower than 13.5 ounces every 24 hours. 
After all, this cut-off point of 27 to 68 ounces of urine is for the “average” person. Meaning a one that weighs around 155 kilos, has normal blood pressure levels, and has optimal renal function. In line with the MSDmanuals portal, experts classify oliguria into three differing types:

  1. Pre-renal: related to blood flow
  2. Renal: attributable to conditions intrinsic to the glomeruli and other kidney structures
  3. Post-renal: obstruction within the structures where urine exits the body

Also, there’s a stage after oliguria called anuria. On this stage, there isn’t any urine production in any respect. Doctors consider the condition to be anuria when the patient produces lower than 3 ounces of urine in 24 hours. That is essentially the most serious type of this condition. 

General terms

In line with the parameters within the Electronic Journal of Medical Portals, and other information that experts have collected, these are the clinical stages in relation to urinary conditions:

  • Normal urine production: 27 to 68 ounces a day
  • Oliguria: between 3 ounces and 13.5 ounces a day
  • Anuria: lower than 3 ounces a day
  • Absolute anuria: no urine production. Unless proven otherwise, it is best to assume that your urinary tract is blocked.

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The symptoms of oliguria

Intense abdominal pain is usually a symptom of this problem.

Like we previously mentioned, oliguria isn’t a disease in itself. As an alternative, it’s a clinical sign of one other condition. The symptoms of oliguria could be very different they usually depend upon the underlying disease. Next, we’ll talk in regards to the symptoms of acute kidney disease:

  • Oliguria: decrease in volume of urine leaving the body, but it may remain stable in some cases.
  • Lack of urination leads to fluid retention which causes the legs, ankles, and feet to swell.
  • Shortness of breath, fatigue, and disorientation.
  • Nausea and weakness.
  • Irregular heartbeat.
  • Chest pain or tightness.
  • Coma and unconsciousness in essentially the most severe cases.

All the symptoms indicate that something is unsuitable along with your kidneys. When these organs don’t work well, toxic and harmful substances. As well as, it causes an imbalance within the blood composition. Also, the patient will lose their homeostatic balance.

Possible complications

If the kidneys don’t filter well, it may cause fluid to accumulate within the lung alveoli. This could make you are feeling overwhelmed, it may cause shortness of breath, and even death if the patient doesn’t act quickly.

As well as, due to underlying processes, chances are you’ll experience pericardium inflammation. This could cause chest pain or a change in your heart rate. Ultimately, all of those conditions may lead to death. Subsequently, you should see a health care provider should you notice any signs of kidney failure. 

The essential causes of origuria

As we said, oliguria could be pre-renal, renal, or post-renal. Also, there are different causes of this condition, and people causes depend upon the organs and structures which might be being affected.


If there’s no fluid within the body, the kidneys can’t make urine. Prolonged diarrhea or repeated vomiting due to an infectious disease could cause your body to lose fluids and electrolytes. Subsequently, oliguria is a transparent sign of dehydration. 

Urinary tract obstruction

On this circumstance, you’re likely coping with a post-renal etiologic agent. The MSD manuals portal states that the causes of urinary tract obstruction in adults are generally kidney stones, benign prostate hyperplasia, and, in essentially the most severe cases, prostate cancer. 

Kidney disease

In case your kidneys don’t filter blood properly, chances are you’ll experience symptoms of oliguria. Chronic kidney disease, acute kidney disease (AKD), glomerulonephritis, or hemolytic uremic syndrome are clinical conditions that may drastically reduce urination rates.

Low cardiac output

Cardiac output is the quantity of blood that the ventricle expels in a single minute. If the center doesn’t pump enough blood, the kidneys filter less and produce less urine. As well as, anemia, bleeding, and hypertension could cause pre-renal oliguria. 

Oliguria diagnosis

Oliguria isn’t a disease, so the diagnosis might be of the condition that’s causing it. First, the specialist will communicate with the patient. Then, if the patient has an urgent have to urinate, but can’t, the oliguria might be the results of an obstruction within the urinary tract. 

However, if the patient may be very thirsty, but doesn’t feel the necessity to go, they’re likely dehydrated. Also, a gradual decrease in the quantity of urine the body produces over days (or months) may indicate acute tubular necrosis or a pre-renal cause.

After these initial distinctions, the doctor will resolve which tests to perform. As well as, it goes without saying that prostate cancer isn’t the identical as reduced cardiac output on account of hypertension. Each clinical condition would require a series of specific tests for diagnosis. 

When to see medical help for the symptoms of oliguria

Sometimes, it’s very normal to urinate lower than normal. You could just not be hydrating enough throughout the workday. Nonetheless, if that lack of urination is accompanied by any of the next symptoms, it is best to see a health care provider:

  1. You don’t urinate enough and your limbs are swollen.
  2. You’re feeling drained and disoriented, and have trouble catching your breath.
  3. You’re feeling nausea and have pain/pressure in your chest.


It’s necessary to see a health care provider of you notice any symptoms of this condition.

In line with the previously cited medical portals, treatment will depend entirely on the explanation for the oliguria. Before deciding on any medical treatment, the healthcare skilled should ask the next questions:

  1. Do you might have normal blood pressure?
  2. Is it possible you might have kidney disease?
  3. Is there any evidence of a urinary tract obstruction?

Based on those 3 questions and their answers, your doctor will suggest treatment options. Listed below are a few of the most typical approaches depending on the variety of oliguria.

1. If the cause is pre-renal

If the oliguria is on account of a dysfunction in blood pressure (and subsequently cardiac output), it might be reversible. It will require proper treatment and early recognition of the condition. First, they’ll try intravenous fluid therapy, followed by the essential drugs to stabilize the situation. 

2. If the cause is renal

In line with the Kidney Foundation, the treatment for kidney issues will depend upon what caused the problem in the primary place. To stabilize the patient, the doctor may give hemodialysis and medications to manage the variety of vitamins and minerals within the blood. As well as, they could use drugs that may stabilize the quantity of fluids within the body.

3. If the cause is post-renal

If the explanation for the urinary tract obstruction is kidney stones, the doctor will often try shock wave lithotripsy. These waves will break the sediment into small pieces in order that the patient can eliminate them more easily. Consequently, this may remove the “plug” that was keeping the urine from getting out.

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The symptoms of oliguria are literally symptoms of an underlying condition

In conclusion, oliguria isn’t a disease in itself, but moderately a clinical condition. It’s an indication that you just’re experiencing failure on the vascular, renal, or urinary tract level. 

Also, treatment will depend entirely on the underlying cause. That’s since you’re not going to treat a kidney injury the identical way you’d treat prostate cancer. So, should you’ve noticed a decrease in your urine levels, we recommend seeing a health care provider. 

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