What other problems may I develop if I have chronic kidney disease?

Kidney cartoon


Most people with chronic kidney disease don’t develop any other problems as a result of their kidney disease, but if you are at late stage chronic kidney disease you are more likely to experience the following:

  • High blood pressure. You may require several different medications to keep your blood pressure well  controlled
  • Increased risk of having a heart attack or stroke. This include stopping smoking, as well as medicine to reduce your blood cholesterol
  • Fluid retention, causing breathlessness due to fluid on the lungs, or swelling of your ankles and sometimes legs. Your doctor may prescribe “water tablet”, also called diuretics, which promote the loss of excess salt and water in the urine
  • Anaemia
  • Abnormal levels of calcium and/or phosphat in your blood which can lead to bone problems
  • Changes acidity of your blood. The kidneys help to prevent the blood becoming acidic. If the acid level in your blood is too high, this can cause breathlessness and also thinning of the bones. Your kidney doctor may prescribe sodium bicarbonate tablets to help balance the acid level in your blood
  • Reduced ability to get rid of medications that are usually removed in your urine. This can cause a build-up of medications in the blood, which can cause side effects
  • Erectile dysfunction in men
  • Irregular periods in women

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