Now accepting Telehealth appointments. Schedule a virtual visit.

March 2018 Newsletter: Warning Signs of Kidney Disease

March 2018 Newsletter: Warning Signs of Kidney Disease

The March 2018 issue of Wellness for Generations newsletter brings…new office, new doctor and new technology! The first article, in its entirety below, discusses kidney disease and the signs you need to look for as possible warnings.


Kidney What? The Warning Signs of Kidney Disease

Kidneys aren’t something you often think about unless you’re considering the shape of your swimming pool or making a batch of chili. But these weird-looking organs do a lot more than you think. With one in three adults at risk for kidney disease, it’s important to know the signs. During National Kidney Monthin March, educate yourself about these essential organs.

What Kidneys Do

Kidneys are known for their bean shape. We are born with two, and each one is about the size of a fist. Kidneys operate as a filter, each day cycling through 120 to 150 quarts of blood and producing urine, which later ends up in your bladder for storage. The kidneys keep your blood stable and prevent the buildup of waste and extra fluid in your body. They also produce hormones that help regulate your blood pressure, make red blood cells, and keep your bones strong.

Signs of Disease

If your kidneys stop filtering out electrolytes and other waste, that fluid builds up in your body. “Chronic kidney disease” refers to the gradual loss of kidney function. At first, you may not realize you have kidney problems. Plus, kidneys are adaptable and often compensate for lost function, meaning you could have irreversible damage before you experience anything abnormal. Keep an eye out for these signs and symptoms:

Some health conditions are apt to lead to kidney disease, including diabetes, other kidney-related illnesses, high blood pressure, kidney stones, or prolonged obstruction of the urinary tract. Kidney disease also occurs more often in those who are obese and smokers as well as those with a family history. African-Americans, Native Americans, and Asian-Americans have a higher risk as well.

Treatment

Kidney disease may be caused by other factors, such as high blood pressure. Before you can treat the kidneys, your doctor will work to control what’s causing the problem. Further treatments work to prevent further damage and maintain kidney function and may include medications as well as some lifestyle changes. If the kidneys continue to fail, you’ll receive dialysis or a kidney transplant. Dialysis is a way of artificially doing the kidneys’ job — removing waste.

How to be a Kidney Donor

Register with the DMV to be an organ donor after you die. Your gift could save multiple lives. Meanwhile, if you know someone with kidney disease, it may be possible for you to help by donating one of your kidneys. Your body will continue to function normally with just one kidney. You might also choose to donate to a stranger. More than 123,000 people are listed for an organ transplant nationwide; more than 101,000 need a kidney. If you are interested in donating, you can learn more about living donation from the National Kidney Foundation or UNOS.

Contact your doctor at Generations Family Practice if you have any concerns about your kidney health.

You Might Also Enjoy...

Lifestyle Tips For Managing Your Diabetes

Diabetes is a serious medical condition that can have life-threatening complications. The good news is that there are numerous lifestyle changes you can make to manage and mitigate the effects of diabetes. Read on to learn more.

Chronic Conditions We Can Help You Manage

Taking care of yourself when you have a chronic medical condition, such as diabetes or heart disease, can be challenging. That’s where chronic care management comes in. Read on to learn how you can get the help you need to live well.

A Closer Look at Transitional Care Management

Making the transition from a hospital, nursing home, or inpatient center to home can be challenging. An integrated care model called transitional care management can help make the process go smoothly. Read on to learn more.

Why You Shouldn’t Skip Your Annual Physical Exam

​​Annual physical exams provide an opportunity for you and your health care provider to track and evaluate your overall health regardless of whether you’re healthy or sick. The appointment includes a physical exam and screenings. Read on.

Recognizing the Earliest Warning Signs of Diabetes

Diabetes is a serious medical condition that can affect nearly every system in the body. Managing diabetes is crucial to living well, and knowing the warning signs is key to getting prompt treatment. Read on to learn more.