Acute Kidney (Renal) Failure


Acute Kidney (Renal) Failure


Acute kidney (renal) failure – a condition in which the kidneys suddenly can’t filter waste from the blood.

It is also known as acute kidney injury. This happens because your kidney suddenly loses the ability to eliminate excess salts, fluids and waste materials from the blood.

Acute kidney failure may develop rapidly over a few hours. Sometimes it can also develop over a few days to weeks. People who are critically ill and need intensive care are at highest risk of developing acute kidney failure. This can be life-threatening condition and requires intensive treatment.

But the good part is if you are in good health, recovery is possible. Let us try to understand this critical health condition in detail.

Acute Kidney Failure Causes

There are three main reasons your kidneys fail all of a sudden.

#1 Impaired blood flow to the kidneys

This means something is stopping blood flow to your kidneys and the reason could be:

  • Infection
  • Liver failure
  • Medications
  • Heart failure
  • Severe burns
  • Severe allergic reactions
  • Severe dehydration

#2 Damage to the kidneys

This means something has directly damaged your kidneys and the reason could be:

  • Blood clots
  • Cholesterol deposit
  • Severe life-threatening infection called sepsis
  • Allergic reaction to certain types of drugs
  • A type of cancer called “multiple myeloma”
  • Conditions that cause inflammation or damage to the kidney tubules, to the small blood vessels in the kidneys, or to the filtering units in the kidneys

#3 Urine blockage in the kidneys

This means you have a condition that is blocking urine from leaving your kidneys and the reason could be:

  • Bladder, cervical, colon, or prostate cancer
  • Blood clots in your urinary tract
  • An enlarged prostate
  • Kidney stones
  • Nerve damage in your bladder

Acute Kidney Failure Symptoms

Signs and symptoms of acute kidney failure may include:

  • Decreased urine output
  • Feeling drowsy or very tired
  • Shortness of breath
  • Itching
  • Joint pain, swelling
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Confusion
  • Stomach and back pain
  • Fever
  • Rash
  • Nosebleed
  • Seizures or coma (in severe cases)

Acute Kidney Failure Risk Factors

The chances of developing acute kidney failure are greater if you’re an older person or if you have any of the following long-term health problems:

  • Liver disease
  • Kidney disease
  • Uncontrolled diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart failure
  • Morbid obesity
  • Certain cancers and their treatments
  • Blockages in the blood vessels in your arms or legs (peripheral artery disease)

Acute Kidney Failure Diagnosis

If your signs and symptoms suggest that you have acute kidney failure, your doctor may recommend certain tests and procedures to verify your diagnosis. These may include:

  • Measuring urine output
  • Urine tests
  • Blood tests
  • Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR)
  • Imaging tests
  • Kidney biopsy

Acute Kidney Failure Treatment

Treating acute kidney failure requires hospitalization. Your treatment procedure and how long you will stay at hospital depends on the cause of your kidney failure and how quickly your kidney recovers.

Your healthcare provider will work to treat all of your symptoms and complications until your kidneys recover. Treatment options include:

  • treating the underlying cause of your kidney injury
  • treating complications until your kidneys recover
  • in more serious cases, dialysis may be needed to help replace kidney function until your kidneys recover

With proper treatment and diligence, your chances of recovery are good. Seek immediate medical care for acute kidney failure, and ask your doctor questions about what you can do to heal faster.

Leave A Reply