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Creatinine - description and reference ranges

What is it?

Creatinine is a waste product created by your muscles that comes from the normal use of the body. Everyone has creatinine in their bloodstream.

A creatinine measurement, subsequently, is a measure of how well your kidneys are doing their job of filtering waste from your blood.

As creatinine is a chemical waste product, generated from energy producing processes in your muscles, healthy kidneys should filter creatinine out of your blood.

After kidneys are done with it, creatinine exits your body as a waste product, via urine.

Reference ranges

If your indicative Creatinine level is lower than the reference range for our laboratory:

Low creatinine levels mean something is affecting creatinine production in the body. This will often result from a person having low muscle mass or body weight. However, low creatinine levels may also indicate a person has chronic kidney disease, reduced kidney function, or malnutrition.

The symptoms that go with low creatinine levels depend on the underlying condition.

Low creatinine levels can be caused by a muscle disease, such as muscular dystrophy. Symptoms of a muscle disease include muscle weakness, muscle stiffness and pain, and decreased mobility.

It can also imply a liver condition. Poor liver function interferes with creatine production, which can cause low creatinine. Symptoms include jaundice, abdominal pain and swelling, and pale, bloody, or tar-colored stools.

Since the breakdown of muscle tissue produces creatinine, low levels of this chemical waste often occur in people with low muscle mass. However, this doesn’t always mean there’s a serious medical problem.

Your should discuss these results with your GP.

If your indicative Creatinine level is higher than the reference range for our laboratory:

Possible causes of a higher creatinine level include kidney damage or kidney failure, kidney infection, reduced blood flow to the kidneys, dehydration

If you have high creatinine levels, general symptoms may include nausea, vomiting, fatigue, changes in urin colour and patterns, high blood pressure, chest pains, muscle cramps

Please discuss this result with your GP.

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