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KIDNEYS >> General symptoms of kidney disease

Changes in Urination
Kidneys make urine, so when the kidneys are failing, the urine may change. How?
  • Patient may have to get up at night to urinate.
  • Urine may be foamy or bubbly. A person may urinate more often, or in greater amounts than usual, with pale urine.
  • Person may urinate less often, or in smaller amounts than usual with dark colored urine.
  • The patient’s urine may contain blood.
  • He may feel pressure or have difficulty urinating.

Swelling
Failing kidneys don’t remove extra fluid, which builds up in your body causing swelling in the legs, ankles, feet, face, and/or hands.

Fatigue
Healthy kidneys make a hormone called erythropoietin that tells your body to make oxygen-carrying red blood cells. As the kidneys fail, they make less erythropoietin. With fewer red blood cells to carry oxygen, your muscles and brain become tired very quickly. This condition is called anemia, and it can be treated.

Skin Rash/Itching
Kidneys remove wastes from the bloodstream. When the kidneys fail, the buildup of wastes in your blood can cause severe itching.

Metallic Taste in Mouth/Ammonia Breath
A buildup of wastes in the blood (called uremia) can make food taste different and cause bad breath. You may also notice that you stop liking to eat meat, or that you are losing weight because you just don’t feel like eating.

Nausea and Vomiting
A severe buildup of wastes in the blood (uremia) can also cause nausea and vomiting. Loss of appetite can lead to weight loss.

Shortness of Breath
Trouble catching your breath can be related to the kidneys in two ways. First, extra fluid in the body can build up in the lungs. And second, anemia (a shortage of oxygen-carrying red blood cells) can leave your body oxygen-starved and short of breath.

Feeling Cold
Anemia can make you feel cold all the time, even in a warm room.

Dizziness and Trouble Concentrating
Anemia related to kidney failure means that your brain is not getting enough oxygen. This can lead to memory problems, trouble with concentration, and dizziness.

Leg/Flank Pain
Some people with kidney problems may have pain in the back or side related to the affected kidney. Polycystic kidney disease, which causes large, fluid-filled cysts on the kidneys and sometimes the liver, can cause pain.

Protein or blood in the urine
This may be discovered on a routine urinalysis that is done as part of an annual physical exam, a preoperative evaluation, or a school, employment, or insurance physical. In many (but not all) types of kidney disease, kidney damage results in leakiness of the tiny glomerular filters. These leaks allow protein and red blood cells, which are normally kept in the bloodstream, to spill into the urine.

High blood pressure
Although this is a very common finding, particularly as people become older, it can also be the first sign of kidney disease. High blood pressure can also itself be a cause of kidney disease, so people who have high blood pressure for a number of years, particularly if it is difficult to control with medications, need to be repeatedly screened for evidence of kidney damage.

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