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Difference Between Urea and Uric Acid

urea-uric_acidUrea vs Uric Acid

Though many get confused, urea and uric acid are two different compounds. We are very familiar with these compounds as these are found and used for various purposes in our daily lives.

In human body, urea is a waste product. It is excreted along with other components in the urine. The other components are sodium chloride and other chemicals. Urea is excreted from the body through sweat also. Uric acid also is excreted from the body, but it is the final product in the urine metabolism. So it is always excreted with urine. Uric acid is the excreta of birds and is usually solid. While human excreted urea is liquid in form.

The chemical formula of urea is (NH2)2CO and that of uric acid is C5H4N4O3. Both these compounds are organic in nature. A molecule of urea has two amine residues and these are joined by the functional group, carbonyl. Uric acid is made from xanthine oxidase. It is toxic to the tissues.

Urea is colorless, soluble in water, odorless, and neutral. It is not toxic and is widely used in the manufacture of the fertilizers. This is because it is a very good source for nitrogen and nitrogen promotes the effective growth of plants. The transportation cost of urea also is less as it is a solid fertilizer and the nitrogen content is high. So the amount of nitrogen transported is more when urea is being transported. It is also used in the feedstock products. Urea has uses in the automotive industry and chemical industry as well.

Uric acid also is a fertilizer owing to its nitrogen content. But the form of uric acid used is Guano. The uric acid has a crystalline form and this is used in the manufacture of some reflectors to repel fireflies.

The high level of blood urea in humans can affect the kidney. If the uric acid content becomes high it can cause pains in your joints. More raised level of uric acid in the body leads to the formation of kidney stones. In human beings, the blood urea converts to uric acid. If this is in excess, the effect of this compound on the kidneys is high in diabetic patients. When excess of urea deposit is found in the body, it indicates the failure or less functioning of the kidneys. Sometimes it can be due to the renal failure as well.


1.Uric acid in bird fecal matter is in the solid state and urea in humans is in the liquid form.
2.Urea is (NH2)2CO while uric acid is C5H4N4O3.
3.Urea has widespread uses in different domains, but uric acid does not have that many uses.
4.Urea is the more commonly used fertilizer than any forms of uric acid.
5.Uric acid excess in the body leads to kidney stones, and excess levels of urea in the body shows the failure of the kidney.
6.The prolonged deposit of uric acid is more harmful to the human body tissues than the deposit of urea.

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  1. Small typo, but confusing if not noticed.

    2nd paragraph:

    “Uric acid also is excreted from the body, but it is the final product in the urine metabolism”

    should read:
    “Uric acid also is excreted from the body, but it is the final product in the purine metabolism.”

  2. Good explanation of the difference between urea and uric acid. But you say that urea is (NH2)2CO. This is correct. But your model diagram of a urea molecule has a unit of NH2 and on the right and a unit of N2H on the left of the CO. I think this is an error; there is no such thing as a N2H unit. There should be two units of NH2, one on either side of the CO.

  3. I have a problem that some times my uric acid rises to 7.9 dl/g and feel pain in my shins instead of joints. Can somebody clarify on this issue.

    • When Uric acid high tends muscles can tighten revealing pain from shin splints find a chiropractor check ya out or someone who knows how to bust them off 😉 you should look into milk thistle nettles sarsaparilla and dandilion mixed steep barking/tougher plants first then move on to leafed plants

  4. Dear Doctor,

    my father suffers from urea high level it is 93 while the regular level is between 10-40 this condition continued for long time in spite of he follow very hard diet his age more than 80 years he takes some medicines like lofral 10mg, atacand 16 mg, aspirin and isorbed 10mg . can you help me how to reduce it.

    thank you very much


  5. My uric acid is normal but blood urea is high. What medicine I should take

  6. Searum uric acid is 6.5 and i have observed freequent burning misturation some time feel like little pain urinsry bladder or feel like obstruction. What actual comdition is??
    I have hyperthyroidism useing methimizole 5mg tab is any co relation for this ??

  7. Very useful and comprehensive site. Thanks.

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