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Your kidneys are responsible for filtering out toxins and keeping your blood clean. However, if your kidneys are damaged, waste can start to build up in your body and you can develop kidney disease. As waste buildup continues and your kidney function drops below 15 percent of normal, you are considered to have kidney failure. Usually, this progresses over time. However, acute kidney failure can happen in a matter of days or even hours. When this happens, you may require dialysis or a kidney transplant for survival.1
According to the National Institute of Health (NIH), kidney failure has decreased significantly over the past few decades, yet still an estimated 23 million American adults have chronic kidney diseases.2 March is National Kidney Month, here are some tips to make sure that your kidneys are as happy and healthy as possible:
Kidney disease can put you at risk for many other health problems including high blood pressure, heart disease, anemia, weak bones and malnutrition. You are also at a higher risk for a stroke or heart attack. Additionally, a total kidney failure may affect your quality of life when it comes to your sleep habits, sex life and mental health. Early detection can slow or prevent the progression of kidney disease, you just need to know the signs to look for. As your kidney function decreases, you may experience:
In the case of acute kidney failure, you may also experience:
At St. Vincent Neighborhood Hospital, the inpatient care team can manage and treat your symptoms. If you need to be seen by a specialist, our telemedicine program connects you with a variety of physicians within the St. Vincent network, so you can be sure you’re getting the treatment you need. In the case that tests need to be run, our 24/7 in-house lab can turnaround results in one hour or less.
If you feel that you are having an emergency, get the closest and fastest care possible. Find the St. Vincent Neighborhood Hospital location nearest you.