Kidney disease: these warning signs should be looked out for

Forum Health Kidney disease: these warning signs should be looked out for

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    Kidney disease: these warning signs should be looked out for

    The kidneys are essential for the health of the body. Because: Kidneys ensure the elimination of metabolic end products and toxins and thus detoxify the body. They also regulate the water and electrolyte balance. Kidneys are real all-rounders: they clean the blood every day, balance the water and salt balance and regulate the acid and base balance, ensure strong bones and control the production of red blood cells. Every day around 3,000 to 4,000 liters of blood flow through the kidneys and are detoxified there. If the kidneys are sick, it can affect all organs. This is why it is so important to keep the kidneys healthy.

    Pay attention to warning signs

    According to the German Kidney Foundation, five to ten million people in Germany live with chronic kidney disease. But only very few diseases are discovered and treated. “It is often only when the kidneys fail that those affected notice that something is wrong,” says rof. Dr. Tobias B. Huber, Director of the III. Medical Clinic of the University Medical Center Hamburg-Eppendorf (UKE). According to the German Kidney Foundation, there is therefore a need for broader education as well as efficient prevention and early detection.

    According to Prof. Huber, the first warning signs of kidney disease are fatigue, unspecific itching, loss of appetite, weakness, edema and, above all, increased blood pressure. If symptoms occur, an interview with an expert is necessary in order to keep the kidneys working for as long as possible before dialysis or a transplant are necessary.

    According to Prof. Huber, there are a number of measures to prevent kidney disease. These include: not smoking, avoiding obesity, consuming little alcohol and eating a balanced diet with little sugar and salt. In addition, experts advise you to drink around 1.5 to two liters of fluids per day. Water and unsweetened teas are the best choices here.

    Heart failure often leads to kidney failure

    Prof. Huber also points out the connection between the health of the heart and the kidneys. Heart failure often leads to kidney failure. This in turn worsens the weakness of the heart (heart failure). According to Huber, around 40 to 60 percent of patients with heart failure also have impaired kidney function. This is often noticeable through water retention (edema) in the body, often on the feet. “Both organs should always be checked regularly and treated in parallel. A weight diary could provide information: If the weight increases, this can indicate deteriorating heart and kidney function, ”explains the doctor.

    Influence of the coronavirus on the kidneys

    The coronavirus can also have a negative impact on the kidneys: “Many patients have urinary abnormalities at the beginning of Covid-19 disease, and acute kidney failure often develops if the disease is severe. Therefore, the kidneys must be carefully monitored in the case of Covid-19 diseases – and urine tests are now standard, ”explains Prof. Huber. It is also known that patients with chronic kidney disease, and especially those who are permanently on dialysis, have significant risk factors for severe Covid-19 courses. According to the doctor, register data from the German Society of Nephrology show that up to 20 percent of dialysis patients die of Covid-19. “That is why dialysis patients should be vaccinated as a priority in order to avoid a serious or fatal course of the disease,” says Prof. Huber.

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Forum Health Kidney disease: these warning signs should be looked out for