Chronic Kidney Disease or CKD is known as ‘Penyakit Buah Pinggang’ in Malaysia. Whether you know it or not, the kidney is one of the most important parts of your body. To understand this, you must first know what it does. Although your kidneys (you have 2) are small in size and lightweight, it receives 20% of blood flow from the heart, very much the same amount that is channelled to the brain which means that it is almost as important as the brain.
What the kidneys do with the amount of blood channelled to it is to regulate the composition of th blood in your body. You can think of the kidneys as the agent that regulates all the important material in your body. It keeps the concentrations of the ions and important substances and water constant so that they are at the appropriate level needed by other parts of your body. In doing so, it keeps a check on your blood pressure and stimulates the making of red blood cells. The kidneys take the blood from the renal artery and then process it before sending it out as processed blood to the body. It filters that which is needed and disposes off that which is not and then throws them out through the urine.
It is when there is a progressive loss in the renal function over time that causes CKD. People who lead healthy lives and exercise regularly rarely contract CKD. This means that it is most common among people who are obese and with high blood pressure (hypertension) although it is by no means exclusive only to this group. CKD can be discovered through a blood test for creatinine. When a high level of creatinine is detected, it means that the kidneys are less capable to filter the good materials and waste in the body and medical attention will be required.
As mentioned and common among most diseases, food intake is very important. Malaysia is a place with very delicious food and too much intake of food with a lot of protein could result in CKD. Hence, it is imperative that you control what you eat and try to control your protein intake which is found in all types of meat and manufactured food. Diabetics are the one of the highest risk groups who can contract CKD. Eat lots of vegetables and food with high contains of fibre which could help to deter CKD in a long run.
Discuss about Malaysia Chronic Kidney Disease in Chronic Kidney Disease Forum
As chronic kidney disease is an extremely serious medical condition, you will need to consult a specialist to treat this problem. Most medical doctors are able to tell if you have a kidney problem but if the situation is worse than it seems, you would need to refer to a Nephrologist who specializes in treating kidney problems. They are often called kidney doctors who can help you if you have CKD, PKD (Polycystic Kidney Disease), acute renal failure and other kidney related conditions.
The most obvious symptom that you might have a kidney problem which could lead to chronic kidney disease can be seen in a routine blood or urine test and verified by the doctor. However, if you are experiencing problems with your digestion like vomiting, nausea, difficulty in eating and lethargy, then it could be signs of CKD. Besides that, you could be experiencing sexual dysfunction and hypertension which means your situation is quite serious.
To treat patients with CKD, doctors will try to reduce your blood pressure to stop any further damage to your kidney. This includes ACE inhibitors, Angiotensin II receptor blockers or ARBs, Beta-blockers, direct renin inhibitors and Diuretics.
To treat complications to CKD, doctors would use iron replacement therapy for anemia and rhEPO or Erythropoietin while ACE inhibitor and ARBs are used as well. During dialysis, medications like erythropoietin (rhEPO) therapy and iron replacement therapy are commonly used as well as Vitamin D to maintain your bone health.
Medication for CKD can be very costly and sometimes painful. If you have CKD, the process can be quite long and you need to change your lifestyle to avoid worsening the kidney conditions. Your biggest threat is your blood pressure and you need to keep your diet in check. Start with reducing the intake of salt in your diet. Check your blood pressure regularly, ensuring that it is below 130/80.
Remember that many types of medicine can harm your kidney. So you have to avoid taking too many types of medicine which can deteriorate its conditions.
Avoid being dehydrated. You must drink a lot of water daily as it can flush out the toxins in your body.
Try to minimize your intake of magnesium and where possible avoid being in a condition of vomiting or diarrhea which can inflict further harm to your kidneys.
What is Dialysis and How does it work for CKD Patients?
If you have kidney disease, your doctor will surely be recommending that you undergo dialysis which is the treatment method used to reduce workload on your kidney. This is very important because if your kidney has a problem, it cannot carry out its usual task which means that your body will be deprived from the usual minerals and nutrients through your daily diet. As such, dialysis is used to help complete some of these things that a healthy kidney is supposed to.
When – Make no mistake about it, kidney failure is FATAL. If you are at the final stage of kidney failure, then you must go for dialysis. There is no two-ways about it. If you have CKD and has already lost about 90% of your kidney’s function, then you need dialysis to help with breaking down the foods.
What – Dialysis is able to keep your body in carrying out important functions like breaking down foods and filtering the waste to be removed. This includes any extra water or salt in the body and preventing any excessive amounts from building up. Besides that, dialysis helps to maintain the safe levels of elements like salt and potassium in your blood as well as in regulating your blood pressure.
How long do you need dialysis for?
It must be noted that kidney failure can be long term but in some cases, they are not permanent and could be cured. In fact, there have been cases where patients with acute kidney failure actually recovered which means that you might only need dialysis for a short period of time. However, in the final stage of kidney failure, your kidneys might not recover and that means you would need to undergo dialysis for the rest of your life or until there is a kidney available for transplant.
Where – You can actually undergo dialysis in the hospital or the medical centre where you are seeking treatment for. For those who can afford to buy this equipment, it can be carried out at home while there are situations where arrangements can be made for the hospital to carry out dialysis at your home as qwell.
Types of Dialysis
There are 2 types of dialysis namely haemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. In the former, a hemodialyzer which is an artificial kidney is used to help remove the waste from our body and any extra elements that are not needed. A minor surgery is made to your arm or your leg for an access into your blood vessels.
The duration for hemodialysis treatment depend largely on the condition of tyour kidney, how much fluid weight you have gained between the sessions, your body mass, the type of artificial kidney used and many other factors. In most cases, each treatment will take about 3 to 4 hours and you will have to go through this 3 times weekly.
On the other hand, peritoneal dialysis involves having your blood cleaned internally. A surgery is carried out where a catheter or plastic tube is placed into your abdomen for access and then dialysate is filled into your abdominal area. Then, the blood will stay in the arteries and veins there while extra fluid or waste are channelled out of your blood. Among the major types of peritoneal dialysis are Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD) and Automated Peritoneal Dialysis (APD).
Is dialysis the cure for kidney disease?
Unfortunately, dialysis is not the cure but it helps in aiding the work that your kidney can no longer do. To cure CKD, kidney transplant is the only solution. Dialysis can cause discomfort but it is one of the oldest treatment methods which have been tested and proven since the 1940s.
Kidney disease and habits that can damage it
Having not enough water, too much salt, bad bladder health, taking too much meat and drinking excessive alcohol are the Top 5 common habits that can damage your kidneys or cause unhealthy kidneys. While these 5 habits can lead to causing kidney diseases, your vital organ can be badly damaged if you continue with certain habits as follow:
Too much sugar – Drinking soda and carbonated drinks are directly linked with kidney disease. In a recent study, those who consumed high contents of sugar were found with a lot of protein in the urine.
Excessive smoking – Besides lung cancer and a host of diseases, it can narrow and harden your blood vessels. This then affects your kidneys.
Vitamin B6 deficiency – Not having Vitamin B6 will increase your risk of kidney stones so you should follow the recommended daily dosage of 1.3 mgs of this vitamin.
Not enough exercise – Fitness should be your priority when it comes to health. It has been found that maintaining a healthy weight will reduce kidney stones risks.
Not enough magnesium – Calcium do not get absorbed into your system if you lack magnesium. This will directly cause kidney stones.
Sleep – Your kidneys need rest. So, if you are not getting enough sleep, your kidneys will suffer because they have to work over time. Make sure you get enough quality sleep every night.
Holding your bladder – Always attend to nature calls in the shortest time possible
Caffeine – Too much caffeine will cause spike your blood pressure and that will directly cause your kidney to suffer. So cut down on the coffee and all types of carbonated drinks.
Medication – Especially pain-killers, don’t take too much medication. If possible, don’t take any at all unless absolutely necessary because medication requires your kidney to work harder and it can be extremely damaging.
Protein – Your body makes ammonia from protein, hence if you take too much of this, your toxin will need to work very hard to neutralize this toxin.