Categories
Table of Contents
Long-term health impacts of kidney disease beyond dialysis and transplant

Long-term health impacts of kidney disease beyond dialysis and transplant!

Table of Contents

A brief summary of the article:

Kidney malfunction can cause several other health problems, including hypertension, anemia, bone problems, heart diseases, and neuropathy. Some sufferers of kidney disease might need a kidney transplant or dialysis to live anymore. Dialysis is a technique that uses either a machine or a catheter to eliminate excess waste and fluid from the blood. The kidney […]

Kidney malfunction can cause several other health problems, including hypertension, anemia, bone problems, heart diseases, and neuropathy.

Some sufferers of kidney disease might need a kidney transplant or dialysis to live anymore. Dialysis is a technique that uses either a machine or a catheter to eliminate excess waste and fluid from the blood. The kidney transplant I had was a surgery that substituted a bad kidney with a good one from a donor.

Nevertheless, dialysis and transplants are not two panaceas to the problem. Of course, they have their risks and challenges and they are not the cure for kidney disease. The patients who go through dialysis or transplants are still at risk of short and long-term health effects that can limit their quality of life and open up the possibility of death.

People in need of kidney transplants in Iran have an exciting opportunity to find one and even study about it.

Let’s talk about health impacts in more detail. 

long-term health impacts of kidney disease

Some of the long-term health impacts of kidney disease beyond dialysis and transplant are:

  • Cardiovascular disease: Kidney disease increases the risk of developing cardiovascular disease, which is the leading cause of death among people with kidney disease. Cardiovascular disease includes conditions such as coronary artery disease, heart failure, stroke, and peripheral artery disease. Dialysis and transplant can also increase the risk of cardiovascular disease due to factors such as infections, inflammation, immunosuppression, and graft rejection.
  • Infections: People with kidney disease have a weakened immune system, which makes them more prone to infections. Dialysis and transplant can further increase the risk of infections due to exposure to blood-borne pathogens, the use of catheters and needles, and the need for immunosuppressive drugs. Infections can cause serious complications, such as sepsis, endocarditis, and osteomyelitis.
  • Malnutrition: Kidney disease can affect the metabolism and appetite of people, leading to malnutrition. Malnutrition is a condition where the body does not get enough nutrients, such as protein, calories, vitamins, and minerals. Malnutrition can cause muscle wasting, weakness, fatigue, poor wound healing, and increased susceptibility to infections. Dialysis and transplants can also contribute to malnutrition due to dietary restrictions, fluid loss, nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea. 
  • Depression: Kidney disease can hurt the mental health of people, causing depression. Depression is a mood disorder that causes persistent sadness, loss of interest, hopelessness, and suicidal thoughts. Depression can affect the adherence to treatment, the quality of life, and the survival of people with kidney disease. Dialysis and transplant can also trigger or worsen depression due to the stress, anxiety, uncertainty, and isolation associated with these treatments.

Short advice: 

These are some of the caprices of health problems the ones which are beyond dialysis or kidney transplant. These side effects may cause physical, mental, and social well-being in people with kidney disease. Therefore, such a team of health experts as nephrologists, nurses, dietitians, social workers, and psychologists should be on top of the effort to minimize or mitigate the effect of the malady. Moreover, one should consider a healthy life includes such habits as balanced nutrition, regular exercise, giving up the habit of smoking, and managing stress.

Kidney disease is a chronic state that once developed has little chance for cure and recovery through life. Dialysis and transplants are determined to be life-saving therapies, but these should be done with the knowledge that there are still some challenges and limitations. People with kidney-related problems mustn’t forget that their illness may have serious long-term effects on health and should therefore see their physician and consult with help to manage the consequences appropriately.

Read more: Disparities in access to kidney care and transplant

Summarize the long-term health impacts of kidney disease: 

Health Impact Description Connection to Dialysis/Transplant
Cardiovascular Disease Increased risk of heart failure, stroke, and peripheral artery disease. Dialysis and transplants can further increase the risk due to various factors.
Infections Increased susceptibility due to weakened immune system. Dialysis and transplant expose individuals to additional risks through catheters, needles, and immunosuppression.
Malnutrition Decreases nutrient absorption and increases protein loss. Dialysis and transplant may contribute through dietary restrictions, nausea, and vomiting.
Mental health Mood disorder causes sadness, loss of interest, and hopelessness. Dialysis and transplant can trigger or worsen depression due to stress, anxiety, and isolation.

As we said above; While dialysis and transplant are crucial for individuals with advanced kidney disease, they do not fully address the long-term health impacts associated with the condition. Here’s a table summarizing some key impacts and additional data points.

Health Impact Description Increased Risk Compared to General Population
Cardiovascular Disease: Includes heart failure, stroke, and peripheral artery disease. 2-4 times more likely
Infections: Increased susceptibility due to weakened immune system. 2-3 times more likely
Bone Mineral Disease: Weakens bones and increases fracture risk. Up to 10 times more likely
Malnutrition: Difficulty absorbing nutrients and increased protein loss. 3 times more likely
Mental Health: Increased risk of depression and anxiety. 2-3 times more likely

Additional data points:

  • Prevalence: Globally, over 850 million people have some form of kidney disease. (Source: The National Kidney Foundation)
  • Mortality: Individuals with kidney disease have a 2-3 times higher mortality risk compared to the general population. (Source: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
  • Early detection and management: Early diagnosis and proper management of kidney disease can significantly slow down its progression and potentially reduce the risk of developing these long-term complications.

Final Advice for Understanding Long-Term Health Impacts of Kidney Disease:

While kidney disease presents challenges, knowledge, and proactive steps are key to taking control of your health.

1. Understand your risk

When it comes to our health, it pays to understand what puts us at risk for certain conditions. In the case of kidney disease, there are some common culprits to be aware of. For example, diseases like diabetes and high blood pressure can take a toll on our kidneys over time. And if kidney disease runs in your family, you may be genetically predisposed. Certain medications can also impact kidney health, so discuss any concerns with your doctor. 

Knowing these risk factors doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll develop kidney troubles, but it does allow you to be more vigilant. If one of these sounds familiar, chat with your physician about screenings to catch any problems early. Don’t panic, just stay informed!    

2. Make early detection a priority

This one’s crucial when trying to safeguard your kidney health. Catching issues early gives you and your medical team more options for keeping things under control. Subtle signs in the beginning stages can be easy to overlook or attribute to other causes. Pay attention if you notice changes in urination habits, persistent fatigue, swollen ankles, or an uptick in blood pressure. Discuss anything amiss with your doctor…don’t downplay symptoms or wait them out! Addressing problems in the early phases can help minimize complications down the road.

3. Lean on the experts

When kidney disease enters the picture, having knowledgeable specialists in your corner makes a world of difference. The right guidance and treatment plan can help you manage symptoms and delay progression to more serious stages. Nephrologists devote their expertise to the kidneys’ complex functions and all the intricacies of disease management. Let them help strategize diet plans and medication routines tailored to your needs. With a bit of diligence from you and wisdom from the experts, kidney disease doesn’t have to run the show.  

4. Form healthy lifestyle habits 

This bit of prevention advice applies broadly, but keeping up healthy habits can directly benefit your kidneys. Maintaining a balanced diet, staying active, keeping alcohol moderate, and avoiding tobacco all do wonders. Additionally, manage other medical issues carefully, as of out-of-control diabetes, heart disease, and blood pressure can tax the kidneys. Finally, finding healthy outlets to manage stress levels, is another contributor. Making kidney-conscious choices in your day-to-day routines keeps them functioning at their best!

5. Explore trustworthy resources 

Knowledge is power when dealing with a kidney health challenge! Reputable groups like the National Kidney Foundation and the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases offer well-researched articles, lifestyle tips, the latest research, and even community support. Bookmark a few trusted sites to turn to when you need guidance on everything from treatment to financial help, to coping techniques. And check back regularly, as new developments in kidney disease management emerge all the time. Staying informed and reaching out when you need assistance can make a huge quality of life difference. You’ve got this!

Read more: Managing Your Kidney Transplant: A Guide to Medications, Monitoring, and Signs to Watch For!

Based on: 

Kidney.org

Health information-Kidney disease 

5/5 - (1 vote)

0 Comments
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments