What is Renal Kidney Disease?

The kidneys are one of the most important organs in the body. It cleans out your system and keeps the body functioning properly. The kidneys have a bean shape and are located on either side of the spine. The urinary bladder is connected to the kidneys. They contain one million nephrons, which are filtering units attached to a tube called tubule. Together, they work to keep the body healthy. When you don’t keep your body healthy by eating nutritious foods and in-taking the right liquids (or consuming too much alcohol), the kidneys can develop various problems, such as renal kidney disease.

The Purpose of the Kidneys

The kidneys remove waste products and excess water from the blood. Each day, your kidneys process around 200 liters of blood and cause the body to produce around 2 liters of urine. The normal metabolic process keeps the process going fluently; this includes the breakdown of active tissues and foods ingested, along with other substances. When you consume medications, vitamins, supplements and various foods, the kidneys help the body to process it.  This process prevents toxin buildup that can be harmful to your body. The kidneys also act as a regulator of minerals, such as calcium, potassium and sodium that are found in the blood. The kidneys also release hormone that are useful for the body.

Kidney Failure

It’s important not to confuse renal disease, or chronic kidney disease, with kidney failure. Kidney failure is when the kidneys become partially or completely disabled and are unable to perform their normal functions. This could lead to more serious complications, since waste and toxic substances begin to build up in the body and aren’t being properly removed.

Problems Caused by Kidney Failure

Once kidney failure takes place it can lead to anemia, high blood pressure, cholesterol and fatty acid disorders, bone disease that impairs the production of hormones produced by the kidneys and acidosis (when there’s lots of acid in body fluids).

Chronic Kidney Disease

An individual who has been diagnosed with renal disease will begin, if they already haven’t, to suffer from gradual and usually permanent kidney function loss. This doesn’t happen right away, it occurs over time – between months and years. The term renal means kidney.

Stages

There are five stages of kidney disease: 1. Slight kidney damage w/ normal or increased filtration, 2. Mild decrease in the function of kidneys, 3. Moderate decrease in function of kidneys, 4. Severe decrease in function of kidneys, 5. Kidney failure that requires transplantation or dialysis to survive – this is also known as end-stage renal disease.

Treatment

Various medications are used to help treat renal disease. Such medicines include red blood cell production stimulators, phosphorous lowering medications, iron supplements and blood pressure medications. Vitamins are also sometimes given. Once the kidneys fail completely, a transplant or dialysis is required.

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