Difference between Osmosis and Dialysis

It is a physical phenomenon that crosses a semi-permeable membrane without spending energy. Dialysis is a process that divides the molecules present in a solution with the help of a semi-permeable membrane, using the difference between their diffusion rates.


It is a physical phenomenon in which a solvent and part of the solute are stirred by means of a semi-permeable membrane. This process allows a simple propagation through said membrane without physical wear.

If there are two mixtures of water and some solute, with different solute bonds and we divide them with a semi-permeable membrane, the water and the diluted solute will reach the mixture with a lower solute concentration until both solutions have a similar concentration.

Osmosis occurs when this membrane divides two solutions with different concentration of molecules each. In this phase, the chemical solvent molecules or particles will pass through the membrane until the equilibrium of the chemical potentials on the two sides of the molecule is obtained.

The osmosis of water is a fundamental biological phenomenon in the metabolism of living beings. It is produced in cells and other membranes, it is also vital for our survival.


It is the movement of colloidal particles trapped in a solvent, according to their different rates of expansion, when they are forced to pass through a semi-permeable membrane. It is a phase in which colloidal particles are separated depending on their size by means of a semi-permeable or dialyzing membrane.

This membrane accesses the passage of molecules of a fixed size and water, it also prevents colloidal particles and macromolecules from passing through.

The smallest molecules will frequent through the pores towards the solution in the bag and towards the solution in the container, carrying the same direction of solution with the lowest concentration. Large molecules will last in the dialysis bag.

It is a very common form in laboratories and in medicine, since they are used to extract toxins and excess water in the blood. Dialysis is a similar kidney therapy that replaces kidney function when it is lost.

Difference Between Osmosis and Dialysis

  • Osmosis is a process in which a solvent crosses a semi-permeable membrane from an area of ​​low concentration to one of higher solute concentration.
  • Osmosis occurs inside the cells, they attract and diffuse nutrients and water passing them through a semi-permeable membrane.
  • Dialysis is a medical process used to replace the filtering functions of the kidneys when they are unable to work. Blood and a dialyzing fluid are passed separated by a semi-permeable membrane. The toxins pass through the membrane into the dialyzing solution to obtain an equilibrium. It means that it passes through an area of ​​higher solute concentration to one of lower concentration.
  • Dialysis in biochemistry is the phase that divides the molecules of a solution thanks to the difference in their diffusion rates by forcing it to pass through a semi-permeable membrane.
  • In diffusion, solute particles dissolve homogeneously in the solvent.
  • In dialysis we find a process of separation of a colloidal solute, this means that it is a solute that does NOT dissolve in the solvent.

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