September 10th, 2012
August 8th, 2012
November 10th, 2010
Mark Kats, M.D.
What is Kidney FailureThe kidneys play a vital role in maintaining every day bodily function. They not only filter the blood and get rid of waste, but they also balance out electrolyte levels in the body which help encourage the production of red blood cells and normalize blood pressure. Understanding what kidney failure is will help you better prevent it from occurring.
Signs and Symptoms of Kidney Failure
Kidney failure, also known as renal failure, may not present many symptoms in the beginning. However, as the kidneys continue to decrease in function, they become unable to regulate water and electrolyte balances, clear waste products from the body, and promote red blood cell production which leads to the onset of symptoms including: lethargy, weakness, shortness of breath and occasional swelling. If left untreated, then life-threatening symptoms can occur, which range from heart failure to coma.
Tests and Diagnosis
In order to confirm kidney failure, blood tests measuring the body’s build-up of waste must be performed. There are a few different ways you can diagnose kidney failure:
Although the cause of kidney failure for some is unknown, there are certain risk factors that may make you more a higher risk for developing kidney failure. Kidney failure typically occurs in connection with another medical condition and rarely occurs out of thin air; so here are the common risk factors for kidney failure: being hospitalized for intensive care purposes , advanced age, prone to blockages in the blood vessels in your arms or legs, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart failure, kidney diseases or liver disease. Kidney failure can be fatal so it’s important to understand the symptoms so you know when to call a specialist. If you get a handle on it in the early stages, the prognosis will likely be less worrisome.