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CKD & Kidney Failure – What to Look Out For

With an estimated 20 million Americans suffering from Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) in one stage or another, the risk of kidney failure is an ever growing concern. The good news is that CKD doesn’t always result in kidney failure.

In fact, with proper self-care and medical treatment, most who are afflicted with CKD will never experience anything close to complete kidney failure. The downside, however, is that due to the often subtle nature of CKD, it can progress steadily, leading to life-threatening complications before you realize the severity of the situation.

It is not often that we say that the people who experience the most pain are better off, but in some situations, especially with CKD, this pain can be a lifesaver by acting as an early warning.

Thankfully, pain is not the only indicator of kidney failure, and by being prudent, proactive and paying attention to these 6 warning signs, you can save yourself a lot of time, a lot of money and maybe even your life.

Swelling

The main job of the kidneys is to rid the body of waste. However, if the kidney is not functioning properly or removing waste and a healthy rate, then excess fluid can build-up in the tissue resulting in swollen hands, wrists, feet, ankles and face. This is known as edema.

Difference in Urination

One of the main ways that kidneys discard waste from the body is through urine, so if your kidney is not working to its full potential, it only begs to reason that there might be some changes. Frequency, quantity, color changed, or the appearance of blood can all be indicators.

Chronic Fatigue

EPO is an important hormone found in the body that helps produce red blood cells. Red blood cells help carry oxygen throughout your body to energize cells. When the kidney is damaged, the production of EPO is reduced and thus, anemia manifests itself as fatigue.

Loss of Appetite

Having a build-up of toxins in the body can result in a unpleasant or metallic flavor in the mouth which needless to say, can turn you off food. Nausea and vomiting are also common symptoms of kidney failure.

Chest Pain

Much like you may experience swelling due to the excess fluid in your body, you may also experience moderate to severe chest pain if said fluid build-up around the lungs or membrane to the heart.

Skin Changes

Developing an itch is a common side effect of an increase of waste build-up in the blood. Often this can manifest in the form of a rash, but many times, it will be feeling of irritation below the skin and often feel like an entire body itch. Skin can also turn yellow or develop a brown hue.

While many of these symptoms can be confused with other another diagnosis, due to the severity of kidney failure, it is important not to take them lightly. If you ever have any concerns, it is advisable that you seek out a medical professional immediately.

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