Some Amazing Facts About the Urinary System

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What Is the Urinary System?

The urinary system is as important as any other systems in the body. It is composed of the two kidneys, the ureters which connects with each of the kidneys, the bladder where the two ureters attach and the urethra where urine is expelled through the process called urination or micturation. Here are additional amazing facts about the urinary system.

About the the Kidneys

The shape of the kidneys is similar to a bean and they are usually colored reddish-brown. The right kidney is often situated lower than the left due to the presence of the liver. The left kidney lies below the spleen. Each kidney is composed of millions of cells known as nephrons. These nephrons contain the glumerolus and the tubules which has several filtering capacity. Waste products are usually sent to the ureters for elimination. Other substances are reabsorbed back into the system.

The renal artery which rises from the aorta in the abdomen normally delivers about 50 gallons of blood to the two kidneys daily for filtration. After filtration blood is then returned to the circulation via the renal vein. Waste products from the metabolism of muscles and drugs as well as excess salt and fluid inside the body are then sent to the ureters.

The ureters are thin tubes where urine flows down toward the bladder. Obstruction in any area of the ureters can cause urine to flow back up and cause kidney disease or kidney stone formation.

In the bladder urine is usually stored before being excreted. It is said that the bladder is capable of holding about 400 millimeters of urine. Contraction of the walls of the bladder often stimulates urination. The flow of urine through the urethra can help minimize the growth of bacteria growing in the area. Thus, holding in urine for longer periods is frequently blamed for the onset of urinary tract infections.

Urine Basics

The liquid that carries toxic wastes away from the body is called urine. It does not normally have any scent upon excretion. The foul smell generally comes from bacteria transforming chemicals in the urine. When urine is left to stand, these bacteria converts urine substances into ammonia, a foul smelling substance.

Did you know that by doing a simple urinalysis, many doctors can already suspect the presence of infection, diabetes, metabolic disorders, kidney problems and injury to the urinary tract? This is because urine contains many substances that may increase or decrease in amount in these disease processes.

In addition to these amazing facts about the urinary system, the process of urination can also indicate the presence of disease. When discomfort, or pain, or burning during urination occurs, these can be symptoms of infection in the urinary tract. When urine output is low or absent, it can likewise mean several things, such as obstruction, tumors, prostate problems and kidney disorders.


UMMC: Urological Disorders,

Kidshealth: Your Urinary System,

Comprehensive Kidney Facts: Human Kidney Anatomy,