Kidney Health: When Should You See a Nephrologist?

If you haven’t heard about a nephrologist before, then don’t be surprised. Many people haven’t until they come across a health issue related to their kidneys. Your kidneys do a very critical job. They rid your body of waste and extra fluid. But if they won’t work efficiently and effectively, then it can lead to kidney disease, kidney damage or even kidney failure. If left untreated kidney failure can be life-threatening. With World Kidney Day around the corner, we are focusing on spreading awareness regarding kidney diseases and who you should visit when such a problem arises. Nephrologists play a pivotal role in diagnosing and treating kidney diseases.

Following are the kidney-related conditions that a nephrologist treats:

1. Acute kidney injury: This is a very serious condition that requires immediate medical attention. A person is suffering from acute kidney injury when he or she experiences kidney failure or kidney damage that has happened within hours or days. Normal kidney failure results from gradual kidney damage. But acute kidney injury happens suddenly and can be irreversible if not managed properly in time. Though anyone can get acute kidney injury, patients who are in the ICU, especially the elderly, are at high risk of getting acute kidney injury. Patients above the age of 65 with chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension or kidney problems are at risk of developing acute kidney injury.

2. Chronic renal failure: Chronic kidney failure refers to the condition where kidneys gradually stop doing their function of removing the wastes and excess fluids from your blood. As it doesn’t show symptoms in the early stages, you must see a nephrologist if you think your kidneys are having some problems. In the advanced stages, this condition can be fatal and will require prolonged maintenance dialysis. Dialysis is the artificial filtration of the blood. Dialysis is needed for the whole life until one gets a kidney transplant.

3. Kidney stones: Kidney stones are formed when there is accumulation of salts and minerals due to lack of water intake or metabolic disorder inside the kidneys and they cause a lot of pain. Usually, they cause no permanent damage but they can cause severe pain, especially while urinating. They can cause severe pain if not removed with urine properly. The intensity of the pain can fluctuate and make you feel uncomfortable. Not drinking enough water, family history or certain medical conditions can lead to the formation of kidney stones. Depending upon the severity of the condition, a nephrologist can suggest the course of treatment. The doctor may recommend medication and ask you to drink plenty of fluids so that the stones pass on their own with the urine. Surgery may be needed if the stone is stuck in the urinary tract.

4. Kidney infections: Kidney infection is a type of urinary tract infection when bacteria travels from urethra or bladder and reaches your kidneys. The treatment of kidney infection usually requires medications. However, if it is left untreated, it can be life-threatening. A kidney infection can be quite painful and you may notice blood in your urine, experience fever and chills and lose your appetite.

Are you looking for a nephrologist in Siliguri?

Symptoms of early-stage kidney disease are often difficult to spot. If you experience early signs of kidney disease, such as pain in back, burning sensation in urine, swelling on the face when you get up in the morning or have chronic diseases like hypertension, diabetes mellitus you must see a nephrologist. If you stay in and around Siliguri, visit NeotiaGetwel Healthcare Centre, it is a leading multispeciality hospital in Siliguri. Our nephrology department is equipped to offer both inpatient & outpatient services to patients suffering from kidney-related disorders. We have an advanced critical care unit for patients suffering from acute renal failure and patients who need special dialysis.