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Most common cause of Acute Kidney Injury 2023 Updated
Acute kidney injury (AKI) is caused by a sudden start and a rapid decrease of kidney function during a few hours or days. It is a serious medical condition that leads to water accumulation, electrolytes, and metabolic waste in the body. Decreased kidney function can impact all organs, but mainly the heart, requiring immediate treatment. Several factors can cause acute kidney disease. Some chronic illnesses negatively impact the kidneys over time, while others strike suddenly. A regular visit to a nephrologist can help you lessen the risk factor and prevent acute renal disease. This blog will also assist you in understanding the cause and symptoms and treatment for acute kidney disease.
What causes acute kidney injury?
Sudden, serious drop in blood flow to the kidneys – Blood flow to the kidneys can be reduced by excessive blood loss, an accident, or a severe illness such as sepsis. Dehydration, or a lack of fluid in the body, can also affect the kidneys. A few other reasons for a sudden drop in blood flow are:
- An infection
- Liver failure
- Medications including aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen, or COX-2 inhibitors like Celebrex
- Blood pressure medications
- Heart failure
- Serious burns or dehydration
- Blood or fluid loss
Something has directly damaged your kidneys – Most people do not experience renal issues because of taking medications. People with major, long-term health issues are more prone to develop a kidney disease because of medications. Among the medications that might occasionally affect the kidneys are:
- Different antibiotics such as Gentamicin and streptomycin
- Pain relievers like naproxen and ibuprofen.
- Blood pressure medications such as ACE inhibitors.
- Some dyes are used in X-ray testing.
A blockage that prevents urine flow from the kidneys – A blockage while urinating can be caused by stones in the kidney, tumors, injuries, or an enlarged prostate gland.
- Bladder, cervical, colon, or prostate cancer
- Blood clots in your urinary tract
- Nerve damage in your bladder
What are the signs and symptoms of acute renal failure?
Acute kidney failure symptoms may include:
- Swelling over the ankles, feet, or legs – One of the first indications is the emergence of swelling over the ankles, feet, or legs. Edema at these places pits when pressure is applied, known as pitting edema. As renal function decreases, salt retention occurs, causing edema in the shins and ankles. In brief, anyone with new-onset pedal edema should see a nephrologist right once and have renal function evaluated.
- Periorbital Edema refers to swelling or puffiness around the eyes produced by fluid buildup in the cells or tissues. It is one of the other symptoms of a kidney problem. It is most noticeable in people with considerable protein leakage via the kidney. Protein loss from the body lowers ventricular oncotic pressure and causes extravascular fluid collection in various locations, such as around the eyes.
- Weakness – An early fatigability is almost usually an indication of kidney illness. As renal failure worsens, this symptom becomes more noticeable. One may feel more sleepy or tired than usual and unable to perform more intensive tasks, necessitating additional rest. This is mostly due to the buildup of toxins and pollutants in the blood because of poor kidney function. Because it is a non-specific symptom, it is frequently neglected and not thoroughly investigated.
- Lower appetite – As a result of the collection of toxins such as urea, creatinine, and acids, an individual’s appetite is decreased. In addition, as kidney condition worsens, there is a change in taste, which patients frequently describe as metallic if one experiences early fullness while eating little over the day.
- Early morning nausea and vomiting – Early morning nausea is one of the first signs of acute renal failure. It also contributes to the individual’s weak appetite. The patient with end-stage renal failure usually has frequent vomiting and a total loss of appetite.
- Anemia – When a person’s hemoglobin level begins to decrease, he or she may seem pale, and there is no obvious source of blood loss from the body. The condition might lead to weakness and fatigue. Anemia is caused by various factors, including low Erythropoietin levels (Erythropoietin is generated in the kidney), low iron levels, and toxin buildup, which causes bone marrow suppression.
- Changes in urine frequency – Your urine production may decrease, or you may feel the urge to pee more frequently, particularly at night (termed as nocturia). It might be a warning sign that the kidney filtration units have been damaged or are about to be harmed. In males, this might indicate urinary tract infection or an enlarged prostate. As a result, any change (increase or decrease) in urine production should be reported to your nephrologist very once.
- Foamy urine or blood in urine – Excessive frothiness in the urine may lead to protein deficiency. Protein and blood cells flow into the urine when the kidney’s filtration function is disturbed. Blood in the urine can suggest renal illness, tumors, kidney stones, or infection. Also, pus in the urine with a fever or chills might indicate a severe urinary tract infection. A renal specialist should report urine color, consistency, or character changes immediately.
- Dry and itchy skin – Itchy skin may indicate severe renal disease. Toxins tend to collect in the body when renal function declines, resulting in itchy, dry, and foul-smelling skin.
- Backache or lower abdomen pain: Pain in the back, side, or below the ribs might be an early sign of a kidney illness such as renal calculus or pyelonephritis. Similarly, lower abdominal pain might be caused by a bladder infection or a ureter stone (the tube connecting the kidney and bladder).
- High Blood Pressure – High blood pressure can be a symptom of renal disease. To lessen the risk of acute kidney disease, each person diagnosed with hypertension should undergo a complete workup of renal functioning and kidney imaging. As kidney function weakens, salt and water retention occur, resulting in increased blood pressure. Hypertension symptoms include headaches, stomach discomfort, visual blackouts, and maybe the first signs of renal damage.
What are the renal disease treatment options?
If you are diagnosed with acute kidney failure (also known as end-stage renal disease or ESRD), you will require dialysis or a kidney transplant to live. Even though there is no cure for ESRD, many people live long lives on dialysis or after a kidney transplant. Your doctor can advise you on the best treatment for you, depending on your health condition. You can find the best nephrologist in Hyderabad who has extensive experience in performing kidney transplants with excellent outcomes.
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