Signs and symptoms of kidney problems

It is very common that we worry about the health of our liver (for example when we drink a glass of alcohol), our heart (if we tend to eat too much fat or excessive amounts of junk food), or our lungs (if we tend to smoke some cigarette from time to time).

But what about our kidneys, and above all, with the most important functions of the kidneys? The truth is that we do not usually remember them until in some routine blood test we find high values ​​of creatinine, or in the presence of protein in the urine. Or, simply, when suddenly our blood pressure rises.

Be that as it may, as you surely know, the kidneys are two important organs for life, fundamental in the process of detoxification and purification of our body. They are indeed, one of the main filters of our blood: they cleanse it by retaining what our body needs and can take advantage of, and it eliminates only what we must discard through urine.

But in addition to this main function are also essential for the proper regulation of our blood pressure, stimulate the production of red blood cells in the blood or are responsible for regulating the hydrosaline balance of our body.

It is usually usual to not feel discomfort or Kidneys pain unless some pathology, disease or condition affects them. Among the main problems that tend to arise we can mention three: kidney stones, the presence of grit in the kidneys, and cysts.

Moreover, it does not always tend to be common for certain symptoms to arise despite the fact that kidney health can not be found one hundred percent. A clear example is found in the arterial hypertension, that like the high cholesterol They do not tend to cause symptoms until it's too late.

However, this is not an impediment to the emergence or appearance of signs or symptoms that can help us discover if we are actually suffering from a kidney disease or condition.

Starting at the beginning ... what are the kidneys?

Did you know the kidneys are the main organs of our urinary system? They consist of a pair of fundamental organs for the proper functioning of our organism, which carry out a wide variety of functions.

Among these functions, the process of keep our blood clean; and not only clean, also correctly balanced, especially from a chemical point of view.

We find them located very close to the middle part of the back, specifically under the ribs, located one on each side of our spine. In addition, they usually have an appearance reminiscent of that of a bean (or bean), and its size is usually not greater than that of the fist of a hand.

The symptoms that can warn us of a kidney problem

Before talking about the symptoms or signs that can appear when we suffer from a disease or kidney disease, it is extremely useful to know that different kidney diseases can be grouped under the following categories:

  • Acute or chronic
  • Hereditary or acquired.
  • Primary (does not arise from a generalized disease) or Secondary (arises with the course of certain generalized diseases).

Many times Kidney disease can develop very quickly, moment in which from a medical point of view is known as acute injury of the kidneys. However, the most common form of kidney disease is one that occurs little by little and slowly, over a long period of time (this is what is medically known as chronic kidney disease).

Urine: changes in urination and smell

It is probably one of the most common and common symptoms that appear when there is a problem or disease in the kidneys. For example, it is common for urine to be darker or redder if it contains blood, be paler and more transparent, or appear foamy or bubbly (it is common when there is a lot of protein in the urine).

On the other hand, it is also common for changes to occur in urination: you may have the need to urinate more times (both during the day and during the night) or even have trouble urinating.

Swelling and fluid retention

When the kidneys function properly, and their function is 100%, they tend to purify well the amount of liquids we drink or consume as well as all the unnecessary waste that our body can not take advantage of.

But when there is a kidney problem it is not possible to get rid of those fluids and fluids that are no longer needed, so that they tend to accumulate in our body.Therefore, fluid retention is common, especially causing swelling of the legs and ankles.

Low back or back pain

It is another of the symptoms related to kidney diseases, especially with kidney stones or cysts. Although it is true that in the case of kidney stones, the annoying and uncomfortable low back pain it tends to appear as extremely painful cramps.

Therefore, we must pay attention to back pain or lower back when it is maintained for days and has not arisen as a result of bad posture or weight bearing inadequately.

Nausea, dizziness and vomiting

It is common for dizziness, nausea or vomiting to arise as a result of the concentration of urea in the blood, which accumulates when the kidneys are not fully able to filter blood properly. It consists of a medical condition known as uremia, and is rather a set of symptoms not only digestive, but also cerebral, respiratory and circulatory.

Metallic taste in the mouth (or ammonia)

When there are problems in the kidneys the accumulation of waste in the blood, as is the case of urea, tends to produce other related symptoms such as having the sensation of metallic taste in the mouth, or ammonia breath, which does not disappear even if we brush our teeth or eat.

Main diseases of the kidneys that can cause symptoms of kidney problems

There are a number of common diseases that can directly affect the kidneys, and therefore, cause the symptoms and signs that we have discussed throughout this note. We highlight -and we summarize- below some of the most common ones:

  • Kidney stones:also known medically with the name ofnephrolithiasisnephrolithiasis or simply stones, is one of the most obvious and common causes. The stones or stones are formed as a result of the crystallization of certain substances, which normally find dissolved in the urine. It is more common in men, and may be caused by genetic factors, infections of the urinary tract, metabolic diseases, the amount of fluid consumed or food.
  • Urinary infections:It is another of the most common kidney diseases. Specifically, we must name the pyelonephritis orhigh urinary infection, which consists of the infection of the kidney caused by an acute or chronic inflammation of the renal tissue and pelvis. The most common cause is the existence of a low urinary tract infection, which eventually ascends to the kidneys.
  • Kidney cysts:the appearance of cysts in the kidneys is common, and when they are treated with punctual cysts they do not tend to cause symptoms. The same does not occur withcystic diseases of the kidney, that can be congenital or hereditary and that causes the appearance of multiple cysts. Stresses in this regard theautosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease and therecessive.
  • Glomerulonephritis:It consists of a set of kidney diseases that cause inflammation of part of the tissue of the kidneys known as renal cortex. In most cases it is due to a reaction of the patient's own immune system.
  • Renal insufficiency:either acute or chronic, basically consists in the kidneys stop filtering the blood properly, accumulating as a result different residues of the degradation of metabolism and molecules (nitrogen products).

Finally, we can mention one of the causes of more serious kidney problems, such as the case of kidney cancer, malignant tumors that occur in the kidney and that nevertheless tend to be not so frequent.

What do I do if I think I have kidney disease?

The best thing to do is always go to the doctor, especially when we have discomfort or pain. In the event that these discomforts or pains are located in the part where the kidneys are located (especially at the level of the lower back), it is best to go to a specialist quickly.

In these cases, especially when the pain is not too strong to "force" us to go to the emergency room, the urologist he is the most suitable medical-specialist, given that he is in charge of studying both the urinary system, within which we are precisely with the kidneys. This article is published for informational purposes only. It can not and should not replace the consultation with a Physician. We advise you to consult your Trusted Doctor. ThemesKidneys

Symptoms of Kidney Disease (May 2021)