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Health Information For Parents
Creatinine is a waste product that the muscles produce at a steady rate as part of normal daily activity. The bloodstream carries creatinine to the kidneys, which filter it out of the blood, then creatinine passes out of the body in the urine (pee).
A urine creatinine test measures the amount of creatinine in the urine. It can be done on its own or with other tests that determine the amounts of other substances in the urine.
Healthy kidneys filter the blood to rid it of waste products that the body can’t use. Low levels of creatinine in the urine may point to a kidney disease, certain muscular and neuromuscular disorders, or a blockage in the urinary tract. If test results are abnormal, other tests will be done to make a specific diagnosis.
A creatinine clearance test measures how much creatinine is passed in the urine over several hours. A blood test to measure the creatinine level in the blood is also usually done. This gives doctors information about how well the kidneys are functioning.
A doctor may order a urine creatinine test in combination with other urine tests even when no kidney problem is suspected. Because creatinine is filtered out at a fairly steady rate, doctors compare the creatinine level with levels of other substances to see if they’re excreted at a normal rate.
Your child might need to temporarily stop taking certain drugs that affect the urine’s creatinine levels and might be asked to not eat large quantities of meat in the day or two before the test.
For a creatinine clearance test, you’ll need to collect all the urine your child passes usually over 24 hours. If you are doing this at home, this usually involves first getting a special container from the lab in which to collect the urine, plus specific instructions.
If your child isn’t potty trained and can’t urinate into a cup, urine collection bags with adhesive tape on one end might instead be used to collect the samples. Your baby’s genital area will need to be cleaned, and then the bag is placed around the urinary opening and secured with the attached tape. A diaper can be placed over the bag. The bag will need to be changed frequently to collect all of the urine, and each bag will need to be emptied into the special container.
Another option is the use of a catheter (a narrow, soft tube), which can be inserted into the bladder and left there for 24 hours to obtain urine.
If you collect the specimen at home, follow any storage and transportation instructions the lab gives you.
Because the test involves normal urination, there shouldn’t be any discomfort as long as your child can provide a urine specimen.
In general, the results of the urine creatinine test are available within a day or two. Your doctor will go over the results with you and explain what they mean. If abnormalities are found, further tests may be needed.
No risks are associated with taking a urine creatinine test.
Infants may occasionally have skin irritation from the adhesive tape on the collection bag. If a catheter is used to get the urine, it may cause temporary discomfort. If you have any questions or concerns about this procedure, talk to your doctor.
Explaining how the test will be conducted and why it’s being done can help ease any fear. Make sure your child understands that there should be no foreign matter, such as toilet paper or hair, in the sample. And all the urine should be collected for the test to be accurate.
If you have questions about the urine creatinine test, speak with your doctor.
The microalbumin-to-creatinine ratio test is most commonly used to screen for kidney problems in teens with diabetes. It may also be used to monitor kidney function in kids and teens who have a kidney disease.
A urine calcium test can help monitor or determine the cause of kidney stones and other kidney diseases, or detect overactivity or underactivity in the parathyroid glands.
The urine protein test is most commonly used to screen for kidney disease and also can help monitor kidney function.
Our Diabetes Center provides information and advice for teens about treating and living with diabetes.
Diabetes means a problem with insulin, an important hormone in the body. Find out how children with diabetes can stay healthy and do the normal stuff kids like to do.
Does your child have type 1 or type 2 diabetes? Learn how to manage the disease and keep your child healthy.
When someone has hypertension (high blood pressure), the heart has to pump harder and the arteries are under more strain as they carry blood.
High blood pressure, also called hypertension, is more common in adults, but it can happen at any age. Learn what it is and how to treat it.
Sometimes, the kidneys can’t do their job properly. In teens, kidney disease is usually due to infections, structural issues, glomerulonephritis, or nephrotic syndrome.
If your doctor wants a urine sample, he or she means pee. It’s easy to give a sample. Watch how this test is done in this video for kids.
This video shows what it’s like to get a urine test.
The kidneys play a critical role in health. When something goes wrong, it could indicate a kidney disease. What are kidney diseases, and how can they be treated?
The bean-shaped kidneys, each about the size of a child’s fist, are essential to our health. Their most important role is to filter blood and produce urine.
Note: All information is for educational purposes only. For specific medical advice, diagnoses, and treatment, consult your doctor.
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