Excerpt from New York Medical Journal and Medical Record, Vol. 115: Philadelphia Medical Journal and the Medical News; January to June, 1922, Inclusive
A low fixation of the specific gravity is of differ ent significance. Under such Circumstances the two hourly specimens and the night urine will consist ently show a low specific gravity, which will vary only a few degrees and which in no specimen will reach This means that the kidneys have lost their ability to concentrate and that they are unable properly to eliminate certain solids. Low fixation occurs in a number of conditions, notably in chronic glomerular nephritis, and also when there is marked anemia, diabetes insipidus, and during the elimina tion of edema. It is, as a rule, associated with a polyuria and in chronic glomerular nephritis with a definite nocturnal polyuria. Indeed, the polyuria is a compensatory effort on the part of Nature to maintain the elimination of solids through kidneys that have lost their power of urinary concentration. When the polyuria ceases, symptoms of toxemia are likely to supervene.
Fixation of the specific gravity at too high or too low a level is strongly suggestive of impaired renal function and calls for further investigation. When considered in conjunction with uranalysis we have a most effective index of kidney insufficiency.
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