Chronic Kidney Disease

Chronic kidney disease (CKD), likewise known as chronic renal failure, is the gradual progressive damage to the kidneys that lead to renal function failure or end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Early detection and proper treatment can usually prevent chronic kidney disease from getting more critical. 

What Causes Chronic Kidney Disease?

The factors that cause the development of chronic kidney disease are: 

What Are The Symptoms Of Chronic Kidney Disease?

Here are the signs and symptoms of chronic kidney disease:

  • Edema of the feet, ankles, hands, and eyes.
  • Fatigue
  • Hematuria (blood in urine)
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Uremic frost (is the deposition of crystallized urea on the skin)
  • Persistent itching
  • Insomnia/sleep problem
  • Confusion, disorientation, and problems with alertness.
  • Chest pain
  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Muscle cramps
  • Dyspnea( shortness of breath)
  • Seizures
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Loss of appetite

Complications of Chronic kidney disease include:

How Is Chronic Kidney Disease Diagnosed?

  • Glomerular filtration rate (normal GFR is 90 – 120mls/min)
  • Serum creatinine
  • Urinalysis
  • Renal ultrasound
  • Kidney biopsy

Treatment Of Chronic Kidney Disease:

Too bad, there is no cure for chronic kidney disease, but there is a treatment for reducing the manifestations and slowing down the progression of the disease. The treatment includes: 

  • To lower BP: Captopril and Losartan
  • Low salt diet
  • Low protein diet
  • Low-fat diet
  • High serum lipids (hyperlipidemia): Statins such as atorvastatin, simvastatin, and lovastatin
  • Anemia: iron and erythropoietin replacement.
  • Vitamin D deficiency: Calcitriol
  • Sexual dysfunction in men: Sildenafil (Viagra) and zinc
  • Phosphate binders (aluminum salt and calcium carbonate): to reduce elevated serum phosphate
  • Renal replacement therapy: hemodialysis
  • Kidney transplant

Prevention Of Chronic Kidney Disease

The best way to prevent chronic kidney diseases is to keep healthy blood pressure, control your blood sugar, stop smoking, limit alcohol, and salt. Many studies have shown that early prevention of CKD is possible. Still, if the kidneys are severely damaged, it would no longer be preventable, but a treatment that requires dialysis or a kidney transplant.

For more information about chronic kidney diseases, you should talk to your physician.