Acute renal failure is the rapid loss of kidney function. It is now known as ‘Acute Kidney Injury’ (AKI). The following article provides detailed information regarding the causes, symptoms, and treatment for this condition, along with dietary guidelines for the affected individuals.
Every organ present inside our body performs specific functions, which are useful for balancing our health. The kidneys are paired organs of the excretory system, that assist in the elimination of waste materials in the form of urine. Regulation of metabolites and secretion of specific hormones are other important functions performed by the kidneys. Acute Kidney Injury (AKI), is a condition which is characterized by the loss of kidney function.
The causes of ARF are varied. It is characterized by certain stages. The stages of ARF are classified on the basis of the decrease in the Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR). Malfunctioning of kidneys can be diagnosed by analyzing the GFR. The decrease in GFR causes accumulation of metabolic waste inside the body, thereby leading to a rise in the level of toxicity. ARF is the first stage and the last stage is known as chronic renal failure. The causes of rapid loss of kidney function is illustrated below.
- Improper fluid balance
- Elevated potassium levels
- High blood urea nitrogen
- High blood creatinine
- Enlargement of prostate gland
- Exposure to toxins
- Low volume of blood
- Low urine production
- Acute tubular necrosis
- Interstitial nephritis
- Acute nephritic syndrome
- Clotting of kidney’s blood vessels
Diagnosis is carried out with blood tests and urine tests. The symptoms of acute renal failure are associated with a decrease in urine production and swelling in specific parts of the body. The symptoms are:
- Decreased urine production
- Decreased appetite
- Swelling of ankle, hands, and feet
- Bloody stools
- High blood pressure
- Bleeding of nose
- Bruising easily
- Metallic taste in mouth
- Decreased sensation
- Rapid hiccups
- Sluggish movements
The treatment starts once the kidney disease is confirmed. Some of the clinical tests include analysis of blood urea nitrogen, serum creatinine, and creatinine. Since AKI is the initial stage of the kidney failure, it can be treated completely with timely drug therapy. The treatment is aimed at restoring kidney function. Tablets are administered to regularize the blood pressure and prevent the occurrence of the seizures. One of the vital treatment options for regulating the normal function of the kidney is dialysis.
Dialysis is one of the most promising treatment options for curing the complications of ARF. There are two types of dialysis, namely hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. In this procedure, the dialyser takes over the function of the kidney and helps in removal of waste products from the body. It also regulates the blood pressure inside the body. However, chances of complete recovery from the chronic renal failure is very less, and it is actually a life-threatening condition.
Excessive consumption of protein-rich foods is one of the reasons behind a number of kidney diseases. Thus, doctors advise a limited intake of protein. Food like meat, eggs, and dairy products should be avoided as much as possible while following an ideal renal failure diet. Curtailing the consumption of protein-rich vegetables is also advised. Foods rich in complex carbohydrates like grains, cereals, and whole foods, are safe for health. Since kidney failure causes deposition of toxins and salts inside the body, external intake of salts is restricted. You should prepare recipes low in sodium, as a high sodium diet will cause water retention inside the body. Food items that are rich in potassium and phosphorous (cheese, baking powder, meat, almonds, etc.) should be consumed in minimal amounts.
A person affected by kidney failure must follow the doctor’s advice when it comes to the use of drugs, dialysis, and dietary guidelines. Timely diagnosis and treatment can certainly lower the risk of complications associated with the loss of kidney function.
Disclaimer: This HealthHearty article is for informative purposes only, and should not be used as a replacement for expert medical advice.