Frequent Urination at Night
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Reviewed By:

Jason Chandrapal, MD

Jason Chandrapal, MD (Urology)

Dr Chandrapal received his MD degree from Texas Tech Health Science Center School of Medicine. After graduation he did a research fellowship with the University of Utah Division of Urology, followed by 4 years of urology residency at Duke University. In 2020 he began a 2 year tenure as an Interprofessional Advanced Clinical Simulation Fellow at the Durham VA in Durham, NC where he created and implemented clinical simulations with an emphasis on emotional intelligence. Additionally he has experience with medical writing and consultation for Buoy Health.

Nao Saito, MD

Nao Saito, MD (Urology)

After graduating from Tokyo Women's Medical University School of Medicine, Dr. Saito worked at Tokyo Women's Medical University Hospital, Toda Chuo General Hospital, Tokyo Women's Medical University Yachiyo Medical Center, and Ako Chuo Hospital before becoming Deputy Director (current position) at Takasaki Tower Clinic Department of Ophthalmology and Urology in April 2020.

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Content updated on Apr 4, 2024

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  • Waking up at night with the desire to pass urine

  • Have to wake up during the night to pee

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About the Symptom

Excessive urination at night is defined as waking up two or more times per night to urinate. Nocturia can be caused by behavior/lifestyle choices or medical conditions.

When to see a doctor

Seek professional care if you experience any of the following symptoms

  • Pass urine at night

Possible Causes

Generally, Frequent urination at night can be related to:

  • Diabetes Insipidus

    A disorder in which the body cannot properly regulate water levels. The cause is damage to either the kidneys or the pituitary gland in the brain.

  • Cauda Equina Tumor

    These are tumors that develop within and below the lumbar spine and involve the "cauda equina" which is a bundle of nerve roots located at the lower end of the spinal cord. These tumors may originate from the lumbar spine or may have spread from other parts of the body. They are diagnosed with MRIs and CT scans after patients come to the physicians with pain and sometimes limb weakness or abnormal sensations.

  • Overactive Bladder

    This group of urinary symptoms causes patients to need to urinate frequently. They may also experience a sudden urge to urinate that is hard to control due to excessive bladder contractions.

  • Spinal Canal Stenosis
  • Parkinson's Disease
  • Bladder Cancer / Ureteric Cancer / Renal Pelvis Cancer
  • Liver Cirrhosis

Related serious diseases

Sometimes, Frequent urination at night may be related to these serious diseases:

  • Urethritis

    Bacterial infection of the urethra (tube from which urine exits the body) leading to pain and penile discharge. It is most often caused by sexually transmitted diseases like Gonorrhea and Chlamydia infections as well as viruses like herpes.

  • Acute Pyelonephritis
  • Chronic Kidney Disease

Doctor's Diagnostic Questions

Your doctor may ask these questions to check for this symptom:

  • Do you wake up frequently at night to urinate?

  • Do you have pain when urinating?

  • Do you have any swelling in your body?

  • Are you having difficulty breathing?

  • Do you struggle to fully empty your bladder?

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Reviewed By:

Jason Chandrapal, MD

Jason Chandrapal, MD (Urology)

Dr Chandrapal received his MD degree from Texas Tech Health Science Center School of Medicine. After graduation he did a research fellowship with the University of Utah Division of Urology, followed by 4 years of urology residency at Duke University. In 2020 he began a 2 year tenure as an Interprofessional Advanced Clinical Simulation Fellow at the Durham VA in Durham, NC where he created and implemented clinical simulations with an emphasis on emotional intelligence. Additionally he has experience with medical writing and consultation for Buoy Health.

Nao Saito, MD

Nao Saito, MD (Urology)

After graduating from Tokyo Women's Medical University School of Medicine, Dr. Saito worked at Tokyo Women's Medical University Hospital, Toda Chuo General Hospital, Tokyo Women's Medical University Yachiyo Medical Center, and Ako Chuo Hospital before becoming Deputy Director (current position) at Takasaki Tower Clinic Department of Ophthalmology and Urology in April 2020.

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