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Kidney Disease & its type

Understanding kidney disease or renal disease begins when our kidneys are no longer able to remove waste from our body efficiently to maintain the fluid balance. The accumulation of these waste products changes the chemistry of our body resulting in symptoms that can be felt or seen. The initial and common symptoms found in kidney diseases are high blood pressure, weakening of bones or anemia. A kidney doctor (known as a Nephrologist) always recommends for certain tests to diagnose the situation of renal functioning. If anyone is diagnosed with a Kidney disease they must follow a kidney-friendly diet and manage diabetes and hypertension. Smoking must be avoided and medicines must be taken regularly as per doctor’s recommendation to maintain the impaired kidneys function better and longer, even when you have kidney disease.

The most common causes of kidney diseases are Diabetes and high blood pressure. Another form of kidney disease is glomerulonephritis, a general term for many types of kidney inflammation. The Genetic kidney diseases (such as polycystic kidney disease, or PKD), autoimmune diseases, birth defects, acute kidney failure and other problems can also become the reason behind kidney disease in a person. Thus there is not a single reason or basis behind kidney disease and any of the above basis can lead to this critical illness.

The kidneys don’t usually fail all at once but the kidney disease progresses very slowly over a period of years. This is good news because if CKD is caught in the initial stages, medicines and lifestyle changes may immediately lower the progression of disease and the stages can be arrested with treatment options.


Chronic kidney disease (CKD) & its Stages

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is detected in various stages, thus it’s important to identify the stage of CKD for deciding treatment. CKD is having five stages from 1 to 5, ranging from nearly normal kidney functions in stage 1 to kidney failure in stage 5, which requires dialysis or kidney transplant.

Understanding the stage of disease is also important to define the control mechanism and slow down the progression of kidney disease accordingly. This disease is so critical that the stages cannot be decided only on the basis of symptoms. There is a medical process in place known as glomerular filtration rate (GFR) which determines GFR by taking a simple blood test.

This GFR reflect how effectively the kidneys eliminate waste from the blood by using an equation that estimates kidney function.


Five stages of Chronic Kidney Disease

Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) is the best measure of kidney function to identify the stage of Kidney disease. The GFR is the number used to figure out a person’s stage of kidney disease. A mathematical formula using the person’s age, race, gender and their serum creatinine is used to calculate a GFR. Below shows the five stages of CKD & GFR for each stage:

  • (GFR > 90 mL/min) is Stage 1 with normal or high GFR

  • (GFR = 60-89 mL/min) is Stage 2 Mild CKD 

  • (GFR = 45-59 mL/min) is Stage 3A Moderate CKD 

  • (GFR = 30-44 mL/min) is Stage 3B Moderate CKD

  • (GFR = 15-29 mL/min) is Stage 4 Severe CKD

  • (GFR <15 mL/min) is Stage 5 End Stage CKD

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