The kidneys Biology of the Kidneys and Urinary Tract filter and cleanse the blood. They also maintain the body’s balance of water, electrolytes Overview of Electrolytes More than half of a person's body weight is water. Doctors think about water in the body as being restricted to various spaces, called fluid compartments. The three main compartments are Fluid... read more (such as sodium, potassium, bicarbonate, and chloride), and nutrients in the blood.
The kidneys begin these tasks by filtering the blood as it flows through microscopic tufts of blood vessels with small pores (glomeruli). This process moves a large amount of water and electrolytes and other substances into the kidney tubules. The cells lining these tubules reabsorb and return needed water, electrolytes, and nutrients (such as glucose and amino acids) to the blood. The cells also transport waste products and drugs from the blood into the fluid (which becomes urine) as it flows through the tubules.
The kidneys also add hormones that maintain blood supply (erythropoietin), blood pressure, and electrolyte balance.
Viewing the Urinary Tract
Disorders that interfere with the transport functions of the cells lining the tubules are called tubular disorders or transport disorders. They include
These tubular disorders are often hereditary Introduction to Congenital Kidney Tubular Disorders The kidneys filter and cleanse the blood. They also maintain the body’s balance of water, dissolved salts ( electrolytes, such as sodium, potassium, and calcium), and nutrients in the blood... read more and many are present at birth. Some have other causes such as drugs or other diseases.