Blood urea nitrogen

Blood urea nitrogen (BUN) is an indication of renal (kidney) health. The normal range is 1.8-7.1 mmol/L or 6–20 mg/dL.

The main causes of an increase in BUN are: high protein diet, decrease in glomerular filtration rate (GFR) (suggestive of renal failure) and in blood volume (hypovolemia), congestive heart failure, gastrointestinal hemorrhage, fever and increased catabolism. Hypothyroidism can cause both decreased GFR and hypovolemia, however BUN-to-creatinine ratio has been found to be lowered in hypothyroidism and raised in hyperthyroidism.

The main causes of a decrease in BUN are severe liver disease, anabolic state, and syndrome of inappropriate antidiuretic hormone.

Reference ranges for blood tests, comparing urea (yellow at right) to other blood constituents.

Another rare cause of a decreased BUN is ornithine transcarbamylase deficiency, which is a genetic disorder inherited in an X-linked recessive pattern. OTC Deficiency is also accompanied by hyperammonemia and high orotic acid levels.

  • Sample of blood serum
  • We perform the test daily