Kidney conditions and treatments
There are a handful of common kidney conditions that you have probably already heard of. We will discuss what some of those conditions are, what complications they bring, and what the recommended treatment is.
* Kidney stones:
This is one of the most common kidney disorders. Also known as nephrolithiasis, kidney stones are formed when minerals in urine form large chunks of crystals that end up blocking urine flow. This causes severe pain in the lower back region and/or abdomen. The majority of kidney stones pass on their own with the help of medical expulsive therapy and pain killers. However, in some cases, kidney stone removal implies surgical intervention. High urine calcium levels, obesity, some medications and not drinking enough water are some of its risk factors.
It happens when only 15% or less of your kidney is considered to be functioning normally. There are two types of kidney failure: acute and chronic kidney failure. The first develops rapidly, may be caused by dehydration, drug overdose, blockage in the urinary tract, or other injuries to the kidney, and most of the time can be treated. Chronic kidney failure develops slowly and can be caused by diabetes, hypertension or a series of genetic diseases. In these cases, treatment is done by recurring to what’s called “renal replacement therapy:” that includes hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis or even a kidney transplant. Apart from being extremely serious, this disease implies a radical change in your lifestyle. Hemodialysis, for example, is a treatment that lasts for up to 5 hours and is required to be done at least 3 times a week.
It is the inflammation of the kidney caused by a bacterial infection (usually the E. coli bacteria). You should always quickly treat urinary tract infections before the bacteria travel up the ureter and get to your kidneys. Blood in pee, fever, vomiting, and lower back pain are some of its symptoms – you may also experience them together with the symptoms of a urinary tract infection (constant urge to pee, burning sensation when peeing, etc). Treatment is generally done through the use of antibiotics.
As we have already mentioned, high blood sugar levels can put your kidneys through a lot of stress and eventually lead to the chronic loss of kidney function. People who suffer from this condition start to develop nocturia – when one wakes up several times during the night to urinate. Then come other symptoms such as headaches, tiredness, nausea, vomiting, itchy skin and leg swelling. Treatment aims to slow down the deterioration of the kidneys (the most common is the use of ACE inhibitor medications to reduce proteinuria levels) and attenuate other related complications that may arise.