Specimen Requirements


Creatinine, Serum

Specimen Requirement

1 SST/1.0 mL serum. After 30 minutes of clotting, promptly centrifuge and refrigerate serum.



Refrigerated: 7 days

Reference Range

By Report


1 day

Clinical Use

Measurements of creatinine are used in the diagnosis and treatment of renal disease. Serum creatinine measurements prove useful in evaluation of kidney glomerular function and in monitoring renal dialysis. However, the serum level is not sensitive to early renal damage and responds more slowly than blood urea nitrogen (BUN) to hemodialysis during treatment of renal failure. Both serum creatinine and BUN are used to differentiate prerenal and postrenal (obstructive) azotemia. An increase in serum BUN without concomitant increase of serum creatinine is key to identifying prerenal azotemia. With postrenal azotemia, both serum BUN and creatinine rise, but the rise is disproportionately greater for BUN.

Test Code