Chronic Renal Failure
Chronic renal failure is a deficiency in kidney function. Kidneys clean waste from the blood. The waste then passes out of the body in urine.
|Anatomy of the Kidney|
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Chronic renal failure is often caused by diseases such as:
This condition is more common in people of African American descent.
Factors that may increase your chance of chronic renal failure include:
Chronic renal failure may cause:
- Sleeping problems
- Weak appetite
- Shortness of breath
- Altered taste
- Altered mental state
You will be asked about your symptoms and medical history. A physical exam will be done.
Your bodily fluids and tissues may be tested. This can be done with:
- Blood tests
- Kidney biopsy
Images may be taken of your bodily structures. This can be done with utrasound .
Those who are already at high risk for kidney disease should be tested more frequently so any damage can be diagnosed early. People with kidney disease will be referred to a nephrologist (a doctor who specializes in treating kidney disorders).
Chronic renal failure cannot be cured. It is possible to slow the progression of kidney damage.
Treatment may include:
- Controlling protein in the urine by restricting the amount of protein in the diet or medication
- Taking ACE inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor antagonists
- Reducing the use of and the dosages of drugs that may be toxic to the kidneys
- Managing the complications of chronic renal disease such as fluid overload, high blood phosphate or potassium levels, low blood level of calcium, and anemia
- Lowering high blood pressure
- Controlling blood sugar and lipid levels
- Staying hydrated
- Controlling salt in the diet
- Participating in an exercise training program to keep you physically fit and reduce the chance of depression
- Quitting smoking
- Undergoing dialysis , a medical process that cleans the blood
- Having a kidney transplant
- Counseling for you and your family about dialysis and/or transplant options
To help reduce your chance of chronic renal failure:
- Get a physical exam every year that includes a urine test to monitor the health of your kidneys.
- If you smoke, talk to your doctor about how you can successfully quit.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Drink water and other fluids to stay hydrated.
- People who have diabetes, previously known kidney disease, high blood pressure, or are over the age of 60 should be screened regularly for kidney disease.
- People with a family history of kidney disease should also be screened regularly.
- Adrienne Carmack, MD
- Reviewed: 06/2016
- Updated: 04/06/2016
Please note, not all procedures included in this resource library are available at Allegiance Health or performed by Allegiance Health physicians.
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