kidney Disease Stages and Symptoms

Kidney Disease Stages And Symptoms

Kidneys are amazing organs, it not only excretes urine from the blood but it also helps to maintain the body electrolyte and synthesizes active form of vitd3.

It is about 4 ½ inches in length, weighing about 6 ounces.  Its function is very vital and it keeps you healthy.  We are so lucky to have two of them.

The Functions Of The Kidney Include:

  • Balancing the body fluids by getting rid of the excess water by producing urine that is dilute relative to plasma.
  • Releasing hormones that regulate blood pressure.
  • It helps to flush out the drugs and other harmful toxins from the body.
  • Regulate the production of red blood cells.
  • Maintain acid- alkaline balance (PH level), aka, acid-based balance.

Kidney possesses a remarkable and involves complex mechanisms to get all this work done. They are multitasking machines of the body.

When a patient reaches complete kidney failure, without the lifesaving treatment, certain death can occur in just a few weeks.

However, the good news about kidney is that even if you lose up to 90% of their functioning, with a proper care you can still be healthy and survive.

Kidney Diseases and Its Stages

The loss of kidney function is called kidney disease.  Doctors call it as acute kidney injury or acute renal failure (ARF).

Kidney failure can be divided into two main categories:

Acute Kidney failure and chronic failure

Acute kidney failure:  When the rate of urine drastically decline and the kidney begins to accumulate the waste products. You may need a dialysis. However, you can recover with proper care.

The most common causes of acute kidney failure include drugs that are toxic to the organs, complication from surgeries (surgeries in which the kidneys are deprived of normal blood flow for extended periods of time)

Chronic failure:  When your kidney gradually lost function over time and no longer able to remove waste from your blood. At this level, dialysis or kidney transplant is required.

The Stages of Kidney Disease

There are 5 stages of kidney disease, numbered 1 through 5, each indicating a level of the organ’s functioning.

Mild cases would be numbered one and two; moderate is number three and advanced are four and five.

Once you have a kidney disease diagnosis, it is important that you understand the differences in each of these following five stages.

Stage 1

Kidney function is normal but there is other evidence of kidney disease, the kidneys are working around 90 percent with proteinuria present (meaning, when you have protein in your urine).

Proteinuria is recognized as an important factor for kidney disease. Having protein in your urine can be an early sign of kidney disease.

In stage 1, GFR is around 90 ml/min. If it is left untreated for too long, it can get worse over time.

Stage 2

A further decline in kidney functioning with Glomerular Filtration rate (GFR ) of around 60 to 89 ml/min. is measured stage 2 kidney disease. Protein in the urine may or may not be present; however, a test should be done at regular intervals to monitor your kidney function.

Stage 3

GFR is around 30 to 59 ml/min.  In stages 1 and 2 other system in the body aren’t yet affected, but in stage 3, a small change in blood and bone health will be seen.

Stage 4

At this stage, the signs of advanced kidney disease are being seen and a GFR of 15 to 29 is present.

At this level, a patient may develop a complication like high blood pressure, anemia (low blood count), weak bones and heart disease.

Stage 5

A person with stage 5 chronic kidney disease (CKD) has an end stage renal disease with a GFR of 15 ml/min or less.

At this advanced stage of kidney disease, the kidney has lost nearly all their ability to do their job effectively and eventually dialysis or a kidney transplant will be needed for survival.

Symptoms of kidney disease

Sometimes symptoms of kidney disease do not occur until a significant a significant loss of kidney function is seen, sometimes even in the 3rd or 4th stage.

Possible symptoms include:

  • A reduced amount of urine
  • Swelling of legs, ankles, and feet from retention of fluids caused by the failure of your kidneys to eliminate water waste
  • Itching and shortness of breath
  • Easy bruising
  • Vomiting
  • Loss appetite
  • Persistent Nausea
  • Confusion
  • Pain or pressure in your chest
  • Seizures

Other less common symptoms are thirst, headache, a bad taste in the mouth, insomnia, twitching or restless legs, impaired memory, numbness and tingling in the hands and feet, urinating frequently especially at night, diarrhea or constipation.



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