Signs of Kidney Problems - Symptoms of kidney failure, kidney damage, or Kidney Disease

Episode 61: Signs of Kidney Problems - Symptoms of kidney failure, kidney damage, or Kidney Disease. Be on the look out for these 19 signs your kidneys may not be working as they should. When you know the signs of kidney problems and the symptoms of chronic kidney disease (CKD), you can make treatment decisions to help improve your kidney health and prevent further kidney damage. Symptoms and signs of Kidney disease can be subtle and are often missed or overlooked. It is also possible to not show any symptoms until your kidney function has declined dangerously low. If you have one or more of the signs of kidney problems or worry about kidney damage, see a doctor for tests. Many of the signs and symptoms on this list can be caused by other health problems and only a doctor can determine the cause. The sooner you address any problems, the better your chance of preventing kidney failure.

Persistent Fatigue – being tired all of the time
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 EPO. With fewer red blood cells to carry oxygen, your muscles and brain tire very quickly. This is anemia, and it can be treated often through diet. This symptom of kidney problems typically occurs at Stage 4 and 5.

Feeling cold – when others are warm
Anemia can make you feel cold all the time, even in a warm room. A lack of red blood cells not only means that enough oxygen is not being transported throughout the body but also that heat and other nutrients carried by the red blood cells are also not being delivered adequately.

Shortness of breath – after very little effort
Being short of 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 faint, dizzy, or weak
Anemia related to kidney disease means that your brain is not getting enough oxygen. This can lead to feeling faint, dizzy, or weak.

Trouble thinking clearly
Anemia related to kidney disease means that your brain is not getting enough oxygen. This can lead to memory problems or trouble with concentration.

High Blood Pressure or difficult to manage blood pressure
When blood vessels in the kidneys become damaged, they do not filter blood well, and the kidneys lose their ability to regulate fluids, hormones, acids, and salts in the body.

Feeling very itchy
Kidneys remove wastes from the bloodstream. When the kidneys have problems, the build-up of wastes in your blood can cause severe itching.

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

Swollen or puffy face
Damaged kidneys don't remove extra fluid, which builds up in your body causing swelling in the face.

Metallic Taste
A build-up of wastes in the blood (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.

Ammonia breath
A build-up of wastes in the blood (uremia) can cause bad breath.

Upset stomach or nausea
A severe build-up of wastes in the blood (uremia) can also cause nausea. Loss of appetite can lead to weight loss.

Muscle Cramps
Muscle cramps, especially in the legs can be a common problem for individuals with kidney disease. An imbalance in fluid or electrolyte levels can trigger these cramps as the metabolic waste builds up to higher levels in the blood.

Pain felt in the back or sides
Not everyone who suffers from kidney problems may experience it. Pain may be felt in the back where the kidneys are located or only on one side where the affected kidney is.

Sleep Problems
When the kidneys do not filter properly, toxins stay in the blood and cause uncomfortable symptoms like insomnia or restless leg syndrome.

IMPORTANT: I AM NOT A DOCTOR. Patients should always be under the care of a physician and defer to their physician for any and all treatment decisions. This video is not meant to replace a physician's advice, supervision, and counsel. No information in the video should be construed as medical advice. All medical decisions should be made by the patient and a qualified physician. This video is for informational purposes only and DOES NOT CONSTITUTE THE PROVIDING OF MEDICAL ADVICE.

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