Diagnosing and screening the organs is a common practice carried out in medical science to detect severe diseases and medical conditions.
BUN and urea are two interrelated terms, measuring urea nitrogen and urea volume in the blood. Both of these screenings use different parameters and have various symptoms, respectively.
BUN vs Urea
BUN stands for Blood Urea Nitrogen, a test measuring the amount of urea nitrogen in the blood. Urea is a waste product produced by the liver due to the breakdown of protein. It’s filtered out of the blood by the kidneys and excreted in the urine. It’s one of the substances measured in the BUN test.
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BUN is a blood urea nitrogen test that detects if the kidneys are working well. Various processes and mechanisms occur in the human body, and the breakdown of protein is one of them.
The liver breakdown the food protein into various sub-components, and urea nitrogen is one of them. The body uses only a small amount of urea nitrogen, and the residue is flushing out in the form of urine.
Urea is a chemical compound produced in the blood and created by the liver.
It is essential to maintain a constant level of urea in the blood because if the blood urea level increases, it may lead to severe medical consequences like heart failure, dehydration, uremic syndrome, or uremia.
To lower the blood urea level, one should avoid smoking and alcohol or eat more fiber.
|Parameters of Comparison||BUN||Urea|
|What is it||BUN represents nitrogen content in the urea and it should be between 7-21 mg/dL.||Urea represent the total amount of the urea component present in the blood.|
|Symptoms||Change in urination, swelling in the legs or hands, feeling tired, Itching, fatigue, dehydration, vomiting, cramps, sleep disorder, and pale skin color||Nausea, vomiting, fatigue, breath shortness, cramping, weight loss, altered taste, and sleepiness.|
|Measurement quantity||Blood urea nitrogen||Blood urea|
|Uremia||High-level of BUN is not necessarily caused Uremia||High-level of urea in the blood will lead to Uremia|
|Kidney involvement||BUN involve the kidney as it determines kidney dysfunction||It does not involve the kidney|
What is BUN?
Routine health screening is essential to detect the effective functioning of the body organs. Body breakdown the food we eat in various sub-components.
Likewise, the liver breakdown the protein and produces urea nitrogen which further ends up in the kidneys.
Kidneys utilize a small amount of urea nitrogen in the blood while the residue is flushing out through urine.
If kidneys are not working well, then it is a bit difficult to remove the urea nitrogen from the blood, this increases the urea nitrogen level in the blood,
and hence the doctor suggests a BUN test to determine and measure the amount of urea nitrogen in the blood. The BUN test report decides if the liver or kidney is working well or not.
Few symptoms help to identify if something is wrong with the kidneys. It can be a change in urination, swelling in the legs or hands, feeling tired, Itching, fatigue, dehydration, vomiting, cramps, sleep disorder, and pale skin color.
BUN level must be between 8 to 21 mg per dL. If anyone has more than 21 mg/dL urea nitrogen in their blood, then they must consult with the doctor.
What is Urea?
Urea is a chemical compound present in the blood and formed by the liver during the breakdown of the food protein. Only a small amount of blood urea is used by the body while the remaining is flushing out through urine.
If urine level is high, it may lead to severe medical consequences like dehydration, uremia, and heart failure.
The high urea level is the result of: either the protein consumption is relatively high, or the kidneys are not capable of filtering the urea from the blood.
Multiple symptoms help to determine high-level blood urea. It includes nausea, vomiting, fatigue, breath shortness, cramping, weight loss, altered taste, and sleepiness.
BUN and urea breath tests are prescribed by the doctor to measure the level of blood urea.
Main Differences Between BUN and Urea
- BUN and urea are two different terms, but they are interrelated in one or another way. BUN is the blood urea nitrogen test that represents nitrogen content in the area, and the normal level of BUN should be between 7-21 mg/dL. On the contrary, Urea represents the total amount of the urea component present in the blood.
- Every medical condition has some symptoms that make the person realize that something is wrong with the body. BUN symptoms include the change in urination, swelling in the legs or hands, feeling tired, Itching, fatigue, dehydration, vomiting, cramps, sleep disorder, and pale skin color. While the symptoms of urea are Nausea, vomiting, fatigue, breath shortness, cramping, weight loss, altered taste, and sleepiness.
- BUN and urea represent two different components or quantities that are measured or determined, respectively. BUN determines the blood urea nitrogen while the area on the other side measures the total blood urea content.
- Uremia is a medical condition that can occur because of kidney infection or injury and chronic disorder, and its symptoms are quite similar to that of BUN and urea. An increase in blood urea will majorly lead to uremia, but an increase in BUN level does not lead to uremia.
- The food we eat breakdown into sub-components. Similarly, the protein breakdown into components, and urea is one of them. BUN involves the kidney as it determines kidney dysfunction, but Urea does not involve the kidneys.
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Piyush Yadav has spent the past 25 years working as a physicist in the local community. He is a physicist passionate about making science more accessible to our readers. He holds a BSc in Natural Sciences and Post Graduate Diploma in Environmental Science. You can read more about him on his bio page.