An inside view of kidney failure

An inside view of kidney failure

Each and every human being has two kidneys and they are called the vital organs not just because they remove the waste product from our body but they also perform a crucial function namely the maintenance of the electrolyte balance. They also control the blood pressure and help in production of RBC by secreting erythropoietin from the adrenal cortex. Such is the magnitude of their importance. Both of them are presented in the abdominal cavity in the right and left lumber region. They receive blood supply through right and left renal artery, branches of the abdominal aorta and send back the blood to the heart by renal veins.

Causes of renal failure:

There are numerous causes and factors of kidney failure. For the purpose of the study they are divided into three types- Pre-renal, renal and post renal causes. All of them are described below.

Pre-renal causes:

1. Hypovolemia because of blood loss

2. Vomiting, diarrhea, sweating

3. Inadequate intake of fluids

4. Certain drugs such as diuretics

5. Obstruction of renal vessels

6. Abnormal blood flow

Renal causes:

1. Due to sepsis the immune system of the body fails to react in the proper manner and as a result shut down of those kidneys occur

2. Some drugs are also held responsible for kidney failure such as the NSAID and some antibiotics.

3. Rhabdomyolysis: because of the muscle breakdown, the normal function of the kidney is impaired and as a consequence kidney failure occurs. This can be caused by trauma or burns.

4. Multiple myeloma

5. Acute glomerulonephritis

6. SLE

Post renal causes:

1.       Bladder and uterus obstruction as they act like dams and produce kidney failure

2.       Prostate cancer can block the urethra that prevents the kidney from emptying its contents

3.       Abdominal lumps

4.       Kidney stones in case there is single kidney

Other causes may be listed as:

1.       Uncontrolled diabetes mellitus

2.       High blood pressure

3.       Chronic glomerulonephritis

4.       Reflux nephropathy

5.       Prostate disease

Kidney failure: signs and symptoms:

In the preliminary stages of the disease the kidney shows no mention worthy signs or symptoms. But as the day progresses, the kidneys also start to exhibit those symptoms and the work rate of each kidney decreases to certain extent. Those symptoms are listed below

1.       Poor regulation of electrolyte and water balance

2.       Inability to clear those waste products from our body

3.       Decreased RBC production

4.       Weakness and lethargy

5.       Shortness of breath

6.       Generalized swelling

7.       Metabolic acidosis may occur as a result of kidney failure and lack of production of bicarbonates to neutralize the acidic condition

8.       Rising potassium level that can cause neuromuscular weakness

9.       Ventricular tachycardia and fibrillation

10.   High urea level in blood can cause encephalitis, pericarditis and decreased muscle function just because of decreased calcium level

11.   In case of kidney failure there is a shortage of erythropoietin production which in turn causes low RBC production. As a result anemia occurs that is held responsible for generalized weakness

12.   Loss of appetite and fatigue

13.   Decreased mental function

14.   Congestive cardiac failure

15.   Increased breathing due to

Clinical Diagnosis of kidney failure:

Diagnosis of it is not a tough ask as there are numerous tests to find out the disease. Diagnosis is basically done by examining the blood. Routine blood test is done to find out the amount of waste materials in the blood. GFR, BUN and creatinine are namely some of those waste products that are found in the blood.

Urine tests are also done to calculate amount of protein, presence of cells that aren’t found normally, concentration of serum electrolytes. Normally protein is not found in urine and the presence of protein in urine indicates towards the impairment of the kidney functions. Cell casts of RBC and WBC are also found in the urine in case of kidney failure. There may be also a difference between concentration of electrolytes in urine and blood. Other notable tests that are done in case of kidney failure are abdominal ultrasound and kidney biopsy


Medical treatment is not much of importance in case of kidney failure rather one should put emphasis on prevention. Hypertension and diabetes mellitus are two diseases that can easily aggravate the disease process. If you can control those aforementioned diseases you can easily prevent kidney failure. But if there is kidney failure then you should concentrate on minimizing the magnitude of the disease and prevent extensive deterioration of the affected kidney. If you fail to do so then no treatment plan on earth can save the patient as it can be one of the most fatal diseases if it remains untreated. So there needs to be perfect attention towards the impacts and prevention of kidney failure.