Last Wednesday, 28 February, Kidney specialist clinicians Michaela Kelleher and Dr Sradha Kotwal provided an excellent (as rated by all attendees) presentation on caring for our kidneys and the latest medical management of chronic kidney disease. A copy of the presentation can be accessed here. A useful handout can be accessed here. Some key points from the presentation were:
- Kidneys are essential in balancing the volume of water in the body, filtering the blood and eliminating waste products and also producing hormones that regulate some important body functions such as blood pressure, making red cells and healthy bones)
- “Good” urine should be almost clear, darker urine may mean you are dehydrated, frothy urine may mean you are losing too much protein
- Kidney disease can be acute (happens very quickly) or it can occur over a long period of time, this is called chronic kidney disease (CKD). CKD is often called the silent disease as there are no warning signs until it is quite advanced. The incidence of CKD worldwide has increased greatly in recent times, along with the increase in occurrence of diabetes
- Of the 1 in 10 people who have CKD, 9 of these don’t know they have it
- There are many risk factors for CKD, with diabetes, high blood pressure, smoking, older age and family history just some of them. You can take steps to reduce your risk of developing CKD by making changes to the risks that are modifiable
- The treatment options for late stage kidney disease are supportive care, dialysis (haemodialysis or peritoneal) or a kidney transplant.