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Creatinine is a waste product in the blood created by the normal metabolism of muscle cells. Healthy kidneys take creatinine out of the blood and remove it into the urine to leave the body. When the kidneys are not working well, creatinine builds up in the blood. If the kidneys lose their ability to filter blood (GFR decreases) more creatinine will accumulate and serum creatinine will rise. As a result, creatinine is an indirect marker of GFR or how well the kidneys work.


A diet high in meat content can cause transient elevations of serum creatinine. Some drugs that may increase creatinine values include gentamicin, cimetidine, heavy-metal chemotherapeutic agents (e.g., cisplatin), and other drugs toxic to the kidneys, such as the cephalosporins. Other conditions that affect kidney function include pyelonephritis, kidney stone, urinary tract obstriction, shock, dehydration, congestive heart failure, etc.


The creatinine test requires a blood sample. It is recommended that the patient befasting (nothing to eat or drink) for at least eight hours before the test. The physician may also require that ascorbic acid (vitamin C), barbiturates, and diuretics be withheld for 24 hours.


Risks for this test are minimal, but may include slight bleeding from the blood-drawing site, fainting or feeling lightheaded after venipuncture, or hematoma (blood accumulating under the puncture site).

Normal results

Normal values can vary from laboratory to laboratory, but are generally in the following ranges:

●Adult female: 0.5–1.1 mg/dL

●Adult male: 0.6–1.2 mg/dL

●Adolescent: 0.5–1.0 mg/dL

●Child: 0.3–0.7 mg/dL

●Infant: 0.2–0.4 mg/dL

●Newborn: 0.3–1.2 mg/dL

Abnormal results

2 to 4 mg/dL indicate the presence of impairment of renal function. Greater than 4 mg/dL indicates serious impairment in renal function.

What creatinine level requires dialysis?

There is no a direct relation between creatinine level and dialysis treatment, only a creatinine level is not enough to decide whether dialysis should be started or not.

For example, even though the creatinine level is not very high, if patients'serum potassium level exceeds 7mmol/L, or BUN level is more than 54mmol/L, or in some other certain conditions, urgent dialysis should be started; though creatinine level is too much higher than the normal level of creatinine, if there are no any obvious complications and patients still have some certain urine output, then dialysis can be postponed. You can welcomed to send us your test report and some more about your condition to, our experts will analysis your condition to see whether urgent dialysis is needed and then give you some medical advices.

How to lower high creatinine level?

On one hand, a healthy diet, especially a low-protein diet is commonly recommended; on another hand, Micro-Chinese Medicine Osmotherapy, a new development of Chinese herbal medicines, is used to help kidney disease patients repair kidney damage and recover kidney function. High creatinine level will naturally go back to normal level with the recovery of kidney function, also dialysis can be effectively avoided. Micro-Chinese Medicine Osmotherapy begins to arouse more and more attention worldwide and we hope it could help more kidney disease patients.

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