Overview of Kidneys
A pair of bean-shaped organs called the Kidneys are located at the bottom of the ribcage in the right and left sides of the back. Even though the body is equipped with two Kidneys, one can live with one Healthy Kidney, if the other is damaged or removed. The Urinary System purifies the blood and clears the body of surplus water and waste in the form of urine. Urinary Tract consists of two Kidneys, two Ureters (one from each kidney), tubes that drain urine from the Kidneys into the bladder (a storage sac), and the urethra. Muscles help control the release of urine from the bladder. The Kidneys receive blood from the aorta, filter it, and drive it back to the heart with the correct balance of chemicals and fluid for utilization all through the body. The urine created by the kidneys is moved out of the body via the urinary tract. The main waste product is urea, which is normally passed out of the body in the urine. If your kidneys malfunction, urea builds up in your body, accumulating in the kidneys, bloodstream and elsewhere
The Functions of Kidneys
- The Kidneys control the quantity and quality of fluids within the body.
- They also produce hormones and vitamins that direct cell activities in many organs; the hormone rennin, for example, helps control blood pressure.
- The Kidneys move waste products out of the Body. When the Kidneys are not working properly, waste products and fluid can build up to dangerous levels, creating a critical situation. Among the significant substances the kidneys help to control are sodium, potassium, chloride, bicarbonate (HCO3-), pH, calcium, phosphorus, and magnesium.
- Remove drugs from the body
- Produce an active form of Vitamin D that promotes strong, healthy bones
- Control the production of red blood cells
Factors effecting Kidney Functions
A number of factors, including drug reactions and degenerative disease not endemic to the kidneys, may bring added stress.
- Analgesic . An Analgesic is any medicine that is used as pain reliever. Many Analgesics can be purchased as over-the-counter (OTC) products (aspirin, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, and naproxen. OTC analgesics taken according to the recommended dosage rarely present a problem for most people. Some conditions such as chronic kidney disease or taking OTC analgesics for a long time or in combination with other analgesics make OTC analgesics dangerous.
- Autoimmune Disorders. These can inflame glomeruli, the tiny blood vessels in the nephrons where blood is filtered in the kidneys. When an Autoimmune Disorder occurs, the body attacks itself with its own immune system. This type of inflammation is called glomerulonephritis
- Drugs. Severe kidney damage can result from an allergic reaction to a Drug; taking large quantities of a drug for a long period of time; taking out-dated tetracyclines; taking long-term or large amounts of pain killers; taking potent antibiotics; accidental ingestion of poisons; toluene inhalation (e.g., industrial exposure and glue sniffing); or combining prescription drugs, over-the-counter drugs (aspirin, acetaminophen, ibuprofen, naproxen sodium), and alcohol
- Homocysteine. High levels of Homocysteine(a sulfur-containing amino acid normally found in small amounts in the blood of healthy persons) can result from genetic disease (homocystinuria); kidney disease; hyperthyroidism; psoriasis; systemic lupus erythemotosus; drug treatment for chronic diseases; and dietary vitamin deficiencies (folic acid, B6, B12). Homocysteine levels tend to increase with age and are higher in men than in women.
- High blood pressure (or hypertension). It creates a significant risk factor for kidney failure.
- Weakened Blood Flow. Any condition that weakened blood flow to the kidneys can damage or cause obstruction in the small blood vessels in the kidneys
- Kidney Infection. A kidney may become infected when the flow of urine is restricted in the urinary tract. An obstruction may lead to stagnation of urine in the kidney that allows infection to spread into the bladder. Possible causes of an obstruction are a congenital defect, a kidney stone, a bladder tumor, or enlargement of the prostate gland.
- Kidney stones. These are more common in middle age and are usually caused by excessive concentrations of substances such as calcium, uric acid, or cystine in the urine
- Urinary tract infections (UTIs). These are frequently occurring health conditions that are caused by various urinary systemic infections, sexual contact, bacteria entering the kidneys via the bloodstream or the urethra, kidney stone blockages, and kidney damage. Infection can lead to impaired kidney function.
Types of Kidney Diseases
Kidney diseases mentioned in various sources includes:
- Nephritis. It is a Kidney Disease caused due to inflammation
- Nephropathy. It is a Kidney Disease caused due to non-inflammatory origins
- Hyperfiltration. Stage 1 – increased filtering without microalbuminuria
- Mild Microalbuminuria. Stage 2 – early stages of microalbuminuria
- Clinical Albuminuria. Stage 3 – microalbuminuria in larger amounts
- Advanced clinical nephropathy (Stage 4)
- Chronic renal insufficiency
- Early kidney failure
- Diabetic nephropathy
- Kidney failure
- Kidney Stones
- Chronic Kidney Disease(CKD)
Prevention of Kidney Disease
Making healthy lifestyle choices can help to keep your kidneys functioning well such as:
- Add lots of fruit and vegetables including legumes (peas or beans) and grain-based food like bread, pasta, noodles and rice to your diet.
- Avoid red meat, add lean meat like chicken and fish each week.
- Avoid salty or fatty food.
- Drink plenty of water instead of other drinks.
- Minimize consumption of fizzy drinks.
- Maintain a healthy weight.
- Add exercise in your life style
- Avoid Smoking
- Limit use of Alcohol
- Monitor and control blood pressure.
- Avoid stress.
- Obese teens more likely to develop end-stage kidney disease (cbsnews.com)
- Renal Failure or Kidney Failure formerly called Renal Insufficiency (healthinessbox.com)