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Kidney Failure Treatments

Treatment

Most chronic kidney diseases are not reversible. But, there are treatments that may be used to help preserve as much kidney function as possible. In the cases of acute renal failure , treatment focuses on the illness or injury that caused the problem.

General Measures

  • Restricting fluids
  • Doing daily weight checks
  • Eating a high-carbohydrate, low-protein diet

Medications

Medications used in acute or chronic kidney failure may include:

  • Diuretics —to flush out the kidneys, increase urine flow, and rid the body of excess sodium (eg, furosemide , mannitol )
  • Dopamine, atrial natriuretic peptide (ANP)—to dilate blood vessels in the kidneys, increase urine flow, flush out sodium
  • Blood pressure medications (eg, ACE inhibitors)
  • Sodium polystyrene sulfonate or insulin in dextrose—to control high potassium levels
  • Calcium acetate —to control high phosphorus levels

Talk to your doctor other medications that your are taking. These include prescribed and over-the-counter medications, as well as herbs and supplements. Since the kidneys are no longer working properly, waste can build up in your body.

Dialysis

Dialysis is a process that takes over for the kidneys and filters waste from the blood. This may be done for short-term, until kidney function improves. Or, it may be done you have a kidney transplant .

Kidney Transplant

This may be the right option for some patients. Having a successful transplant depends on many factors, such as what is causing the kidney damage and your overall health.

Blood Tests

Your doctor will monitor these blood levels:

  • Sodium
  • Potassium
  • Calcium
  • Phosphate
  • Red blood cells
    • Your doctor may inject a hormone called erythropoietin to help manage anemia .
  • Hematocrit
  • Platelets

Lifestyle Changes

The following are steps to help your kidneys stay healthy longer:

  • Have your blood pressure checked regularly. Take medication to control high blood pressure.
  • If you have diabetes, control your blood sugar. Ask your doctor for help.
  • Avoid the chronic use of pain medications.
  • If you have chronic kidney disease, you may need to limit how much protein you eat. Talk to a dietician.
  • Limit how much cholesterol and sodium you eat.
  • If you have severe kidney disease, limit how much potassium you eat. If your kidneys are failing, get help from a dietician.

If you are diagnosed with kidney failure, follow your doctor's instructions .

Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2019 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.

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