According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than one in seven adults in the United States have chronic kidney disease (CKD). It’s the ninth leading cause of death in the country. Nonetheless, approximately 90 percent of those who have CKD are not even aware that they have it.
Learn about the five warning signs of CKD and where you can get high-quality kidney disease treatment in Marlborough, Massachusetts.
The primary function of the kidneys is to remove waste products (urea) from the blood and produce urine to eliminate them from the body. Thus, the most obvious sign of kidney disease is having urine problems. Less urine output, increased urge to urinate, unusual smell or color, foam or blood in urine, and pain during urination are all indications that the kidneys are not functioning properly.
Loss of Appetite
Chronic kidney disease can cause uremia, a condition that occurs when there is a buildup of waste products in your blood. Uremia can affect your whole body and cause more serious health complications.
Uremia causes a person to have bad breath (also called “ammonia breath”), a metallic taste in their mouth, and poor appetite.
The kidneys, along with the liver, produce a hormone called erythropoietin (EPO). The hormone plays a crucial role in the production of red blood cells (RBCs), which are responsible for carrying oxygen from the lungs to the rest of the body.
When the kidneys are not working properly, they also produce less EPO, which means you have fewer red blood cells and a low count of hemoglobin (the protein in red blood cells that transports oxygen to your cells). This results in anemia, which is a common culprit in fatigue and weakness.
Uremia also causes chronic fatigue in people living with CKD. The buildup of impurities in the blood can cause fatigue and concentration difficulty.
Swelling in the Feet and Ankles
When kidneys start to lose their filtering capabilities, fluid builds up in your body, which causes swelling in the ankles, feet, legs, and/or faces.
Itching and skin rash are quite common in people with chronic kidney disease. This condition is known as uremic pruritus. It is characterized by bouts of itching that worsen at night and may interfere with your sleep. Uremic pruritis is attributed to uremia. Excessive urea in the blood causes an unbearable itch.
Chronic Kidney Disease Treatment in Marlborough, MA
At Commonwealth Nephrology Associates, our board-certified kidney doctors take pride in their decades of experience and dedication to provide comprehensive, effective care for the full range of kidney diseases. We also provide treatment for electrolyte disorders and hypertension, which are both related to kidney disease.