Kidney Disease

World Kidney Day 2018

Kidney disease: What you need to know

By Dr. Mohamed, H. M

“Dar es Salaam – Sali International Hospital (SIH) continues to express optimism in meeting the healthcare needs of the Tanzanian people. The Masaki based hospital operates in a private healthcare and keen to support and advise Tanzanian people on health issues.”

According to statistics by World Health Organization, it is known that kidney (Renal) disease affects over 500 million people worldwide with prevalence of around 14% in Sub-Saharan Africa. The risk of developing kidney disease is as high in women as in men. The kidneys are important because they filter blood, remove extra fluid/wastes from blood, control body’s chemical balance, help control blood pressure, help keep bones healthy and help make red blood cells.

What can happen if one has kidney disease? There can be reduction of the normal functioning of the kidneys leading to rise in serum creatinine and/or fall in urine output. Can be acute or chronic. In acute kidney injury, there is sudden and rapid loss of kidney function within hours or days. Having risk factors, increases chances of kidney failure.

What causes acute injury or failure? Some causes include; reduced blood supply to kidneys, damage caused by drugs/medicines, toxins/chemicals, severe systemic infection, physical injury and, blockage or reduction of urine passage.

What symptoms? Generally, early disease may not have symptoms. Symptoms may include reduction/no passage of urine, feeling tired, and shortness of breath, chest tightness, confusion, seizures, drowsiness, reduced appetite, nausea, abdominal / flank pain, dry itchy skin, and muscle cramping at night and, swelling of feet, ankles and around eyes.

Risk factors include; Diabetes mellitus (high blood sugar), Advancing age, Hypertension (high blood pressure), High blood cholesterol, Family history of heart or kidney disease, Smoking cigarettes, Autoimmune diseases like lupus, Excessive use of alcohol, Being overweight/obesity, Having sedentary lifestyle (lack of exercise) and, African-American and other ethnic minorities have higher risk.

What must be done? Know the risk factors/causes, reduce your risks, early detection and management can protect the kidneys. Some may require dialysis (using machine to remove toxins/ wastes from blood) and/or renal transplant when in advanced disease.

Reduce your risks now. What to do? Physical activity at least 30 mins/day for at least 5 days/week of brisk walking/or aerobics, avoid using over the counter pills like antibiotics, analgesic (diclofenac, ibuprofen) etc, stop smoking, stop/ reduce alcohol consumption, adequately control blood sugar and blood pressure, maintain healthy weight. Eating healthy foods low in fats/oils, less salt, reduce consumption of red meats and, maintain healthy fluid intake daily.

For more information on a Kidney Disease, visit Sali International Hospital or call us at 0222601276/0222601296/0222601283.

“Your Health is Important to us”

Pictures Courtesy of Sali international Hospital