T Nation

Doctors, BUN, And Renal Failure

The other week I had to go to the doctor because of killer abdominal pains. They couldn’t figure out what was going on, and sent me to get some blood work done the next morning.

My results came back, and nothing explaining the abdominal pains, but my BUN (blood urea nitrogen) came back way high. It was 30 mg/dl, normal range being 7-18 according to the lab. This basically freaked out the nurse, who told me that I was on the verge of renal failure, and my doctor ordered another test thinking that I was dehydrated, but told me to “cut back on the protein powder next week and stay hydrated”.

A bit of background, I’m a 19 yr old college student living with parents who are very skeptical about the whole bb scene. I am in the middle of contest prep for a couple of spring/summer shows. I basically know that the protein powder reduction will have zero effect, and the high BUN is most likely from taking in 250g - 350g protein a day. I only take 30g whey on training days. I have zero symptoms of renal failure aside from the BUN. I drink 2 gallons of water a day, have no problems peeing, and have no pain in my kidneys. My doctor hasn’t asked about my daily protein intake yet, but if he does, I’m pretty much sure that he will tell me (and my parents) to cut back, effectively screwing up my contest prep. Or another thing would be that next week when I get my blood work done after a week of ‘staying hydrated and cutting back on the protein powder’ and it comes back normal, my parents will effectively declare that the protein powder is a steroid, destroying my kidneys, and ban all use of it.

Can anyone familiar with blood work add some input to the whole 30 mg/dl BUN? Is it really as bad as the nurse made it out to be? Is BUN that high normal for BB’ers on high protein diets? Any advice on handling the situation is appreciated.