Chronic kidney disease, also called chronic kidney failure, describes the gradual loss of kidney function. Your kidneys filter wastes and excess fluids from your blood, which are then excreted in your urine. When chronic kidney disease reaches an advanced stage, dangerous levels of fluid, electrolytes and wastes can build up in your body.
Signs and symptoms of chronic kidney disease develop over time if kidney damage progresses slowly.
Signs and symptoms of kidney disease may include:
• Loss of appetite
• Fatigue and weakness
• Sleep problems
• Changes in urine output
• Decreased mental sharpness
• Muscle twitches and cramps
• Swelling of feet and ankles
• Persistent itching
• Chest pain, if fluid builds up around the lining of the heart
• Shortness of breath, if fluid builds up in the lungs
• High blood pressure (hypertension) that's difficult to control
To determine whether you have chronic kidney disease, you may need tests and procedures such as:
• Blood tests:
Kidney function tests look for the level of waste products, such as creatinine and urea, in your blood.
• Urine tests:
Analyzing a sample of your urine may reveal abnormalities that point to chronic kidney failure and help identify the cause of chronic kidney disease.
• Imaging tests.
Ultrasound use to assess kidneys' structure and size.
• Removing a sample of kidney tissue for testing. (Biopsy)
Doctor may recommend a kidney biopsy to remove a sample of kidney tissue. Kidney biopsy is often done with local anesthesia using a long, thin needle that's inserted through your skin and into your kidney. The biopsy sample is sent to a lab for testing to help determine what's causing your kidney problem.
Kidney disease complications can be controlled to make you more comfortable. Treatments may include:
• High blood pressure medications. People with kidney disease may experience worsening high blood pressure. Doctor may recommend medications to lower your blood pressure — commonly angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers — and to preserve kidney function.
• Medications to lower cholesterol levels. Doctor may recommend medications called statins to lower your cholesterol. People with chronic kidney disease often experience high levels of bad cholesterol, which can increase the risk of heart disease.
• Medications to treat anemia. In certain situations, doctor may recommend supplements of the hormone erythropoietin sometimes with added iron.
• Medications to relieve swelling. People with chronic kidney disease may retain fluids. This can lead to swelling in the legs, as well as high blood pressure. Medications called diuretics can help maintain the balance of fluids in your body.
• Medications to protect your bones. Doctor may prescribe calcium and vitamin D supplements to prevent weak bones and lower your risk of fracture. You may also take medication to lower the amount of phosphate in your blood, to protect your blood vessels from damage by calcium deposits (calcification).
• A lower protein diet to minimize waste products in your blood. As your body processes protein from foods, it creates waste products that your kidneys must filter from your blood. To reduce the amount of work your kidneys must do, your doctor may recommend eating less protein. Doctor may also ask you to meet with a dietitian who can suggest ways to lower your protein intake while still eating a healthy diet.
You may need to make changes to your diet when you have chronic kidney disease. These changes include limiting fluids, eating a low-protein diet, limiting salt, potassium, phosphorous, and other electrolytes, and getting enough calories if you are losing weight.
Make an appointment with a nutritionist for your diet plans.
Treatment for end-stage kidney disease
If your kidneys can't keep up with waste and fluid clearance on their own and you develop complete or near-complete kidney failure, you have end-stage kidney disease. At that point, dialysis or a kidney transplant is needed.
• Dialysis. Dialysis artificially removes waste products and extra fluid from your blood when your kidneys can no longer do this. In hemodialysis, a machine filters waste and excess fluids from your blood. In peritoneal dialysis, a thin tube (catheter) inserted into your abdomen fills your abdominal cavity with a dialysis solution that absorbs waste and excess fluids. After a period of time, the dialysis solution drains from your body, carrying the waste with it.
• Kidney transplant. A kidney transplant involves surgically placing a healthy kidney from a donor into your body.
Consult at Aadil hospital for medical and dialysis treatment.