Navigating Through Chronic Kidney Disease: Understanding, Management, and Prevention (2023)

Navigating Through Chronic Kidney Disease: Understanding, Management, and Prevention (1)

Welcome to our comprehensive guide on a medical condition that's more common than you might think – chronic kidney disease (CKD). Every minute, our kidneys are tirelessly working, filtering approximately 200 quarts of blood, removing toxins, maintaining fluid balance, and performing a host of other critical functions. But what happens when these life-sustaining powerhouses falter?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CKD affects about 15% of U.S. adults, silently impairing their kidney function and, if untreated, possibly leading to life-threatening complications. This blog post delves deep into the world of chronic kidney disease, shedding light on its nature, risk factors, diagnosis, management, and prevention. Through understanding and awareness, we believe that we can collectively combat the progression of this stealthy disease. Let's embark on this journey of knowledge and empowerment together.

Understanding Chronic Kidney Disease

The term "chronic kidney disease" might sound a bit medical jargon-like, but breaking it down simplifies it: 'Chronic' implies a long-term condition, 'kidney' pinpoints the organs involved, and 'disease' denotes that things aren't working as they should be.

The kidneys, two bean-shaped organs in your lower back, are amongst your body's unsung heroes. With unflagging zeal, they filter waste and excess water from your blood, maintain the balance of salts and minerals—such as sodium, calcium, phosphorus, and potassium—in your blood, regulate blood pressure, and even produce a hormone that helps make red blood cells.

But with chronic kidney disease, this essential filtering system is compromised. Over time, the condition gradually damages the kidneys' delicate filtering units, leading to a build-up of waste products in the body. The disease progression is slow and often silent, which means symptoms may not appear until the kidneys are significantly damaged.

The leading causes of CKD are diabetes and high blood pressure, which are responsible for up to two-thirds of the cases. Other conditions that can injure the kidneys and cause CKD include autoimmune diseases like lupus, genetic disorders like polycystic kidney disease, and certain types of kidney infections.

The stages of chronic kidney disease are defined by your glomerular filtration rate (GFR)—a measure of kidney function. The disease progresses from stage 1 (very mild damage with normal or increased filtration) to stage 5 (kidney failure). Depending on the stage, CKD can lead to complications like high blood pressure, anemia, weak bones, poor nutritional health, and nerve damage.

Understanding CKD and its effects can provide a roadmap for how to manage and potentially slow down the progression of the disease. It is a journey that begins with knowledge and awareness.

Risk Factors of Chronic Kidney Disease

Certain factors can increase the risk of developing chronic kidney disease, some of which are modifiable, while others are not. Understanding these risk factors is the first step in minimizing your risk and potentially preventing CKD.

A. Lifestyle Risk Factors

Lifestyle choices can significantly impact your risk of developing CKD. They include:

  1. Unhealthy diet: Consuming excessive amounts of salty and processed foods can lead to high blood pressure, a risk factor for CKD.

  2. Physical inactivity: Regular physical activity helps control blood pressure and manage weight, both of which are essential for kidney health.

  3. Tobacco use: Smoking can damage blood vessels, decrease blood flow to the kidneys, and accelerate loss of kidney functions.

  4. Excessive alcohol consumption: This can cause high blood pressure and liver disease, which in turn can harm the kidneys.

B. Medical Risk Factors

Medical conditions can also contribute to the development of CKD. These include:

  1. Diabetes: High blood glucose from diabetes can damage the kidneys' filters over time, causing CKD.

  2. High blood pressure (hypertension): Uncontrolled high blood pressure can damage the kidneys over time, leading to CKD.

    (Video) How To Navigate A Diagnosis Of Chronic Disease

  3. Heart disease: Heart disease and kidney disease often go hand in hand. CKD can cause heart disease, and vice versa.

  4. Family history of kidney disease: Like many diseases, if you have a family history of kidney disease, you're more likely to develop CKD.

  5. Age: CKD is more common in people aged 60 or over.

  6. Certain ethnic groups: People of African, Asian, or Aboriginal origin are at higher risk of CKD.

  7. Other chronic conditions: Conditions such as HIV/AIDS, lupus, and polycystic kidney disease can increase the risk of CKD.

Recognizing these risk factors allows for proactive measures to maintain kidney health. Regular health screenings, a healthy diet, exercise, and medication (where necessary) can help control these risks and keep your kidneys healthy. Remember, prevention is better than cure, and your lifestyle choices play a crucial role in maintaining good kidney health.

Diagnosis of Chronic Kidney Disease

Early detection and diagnosis of chronic kidney disease are vital to managing the condition effectively and slowing its progression. This process involves several tests that can provide a comprehensive picture of your kidney health.

A. Blood Tests

The Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR) is determined through a blood test and is the best overall index of kidney function. It measures how much blood passes through the glomeruli - tiny filters in the kidneys that filter waste from the blood - each minute. A lower GFR can indicate a decreased kidney function.

B. Urine Tests

Urine tests, such as Urinalysis and the Albumin-to-Creatinine Ratio (ACR), play an essential role in diagnosing CKD. Urinalysis involves examining a sample of your urine for abnormalities, including high levels of protein or red and white blood cells. The ACR measures the ratio of albumin (a type of protein) to creatinine in your urine. An elevated ACR can be an early sign of kidney disease.

C. Imaging Tests

Imaging tests like ultrasound or computerized tomography (CT) scans can help your doctor visualize your kidneys and urinary tract. These images can reveal kidney size and structure and detect issues like tumors, kidney stones, or blockages that might contribute to CKD.

D. Kidney Biopsy

In some cases, a kidney biopsy might be needed to determine the type and severity of kidney disease. This procedure involves using a needle to extract a small sample of kidney tissue for microscopic examination.

Your healthcare provider will use the results of these tests in combination to make a diagnosis. Remember, the earlier CKD is diagnosed, the more effective treatment can be. Regular check-ups and health screenings are instrumental, especially if you have any of the risk factors associated with CKD.

Treatment and Management of Chronic Kidney Disease

While there is no outright cure for chronic kidney disease, the condition can be managed to slow its progression, minimize symptoms, and address underlying causes. Here's how:

A. Lifestyle Changes

  1. Healthy diet: Consuming a kidney-friendly diet is crucial. Reducing sodium, potassium, and phosphorus intake can help manage CKD. Consulting a dietitian who specializes in kidney disease can provide you with a personalized diet plan.

  2. Regular exercise: Regular physical activity can help control blood pressure, manage weight, and improve overall wellbeing.

    (Video) Living with Stage 3 Kidney Disease | American Kidney Fund

  3. Quit smoking: Smoking can worsen kidney damage. Quitting can slow the progression of CKD and improve your overall health.

  4. Limit alcohol: Excessive alcohol consumption can affect your kidneys and contribute to high blood pressure. Limiting or avoiding alcohol can help maintain your kidney health.

B. Medications

Medications can control symptoms and slow the progression of CKD. The type of medication prescribed will depend on the underlying cause of the disease.

  1. Blood pressure medications: Controlling blood pressure is crucial in slowing kidney damage. Medications such as angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) are often prescribed.

  2. Cholesterol medication: Medications called statins can help manage high cholesterol levels.

  3. Anemia medication: Medicines like erythropoiesis-stimulating agents (ESAs) and iron supplements may be used to stimulate the production of red blood cells and manage anemia, a common complication of CKD.

  4. Bone health medication: Vitamin D, calcium supplements, and phosphate binders can help prevent weak bones.

C. Advanced Treatments

In the later stages of CKD, treatment options include:

  1. Dialysis: Dialysis artificially removes waste products and extra fluid from your blood when your kidneys can no longer do this.

  2. Kidney transplant: This is a surgical procedure to place a healthy kidney from a living or deceased donor into your body.

D. Role of the Healthcare Team

Your healthcare team, which may include nephrologists, dietitians, and social workers, plays a crucial role in your CKD management plan. Regular follow-ups, monitoring, and adjustments to your treatment plan can help maintain the best possible health.

Remember, every individual's journey with CKD is unique. What works best for one person might not work for another. It's essential to discuss your options with your healthcare team and follow their guidance.

Living with Chronic Kidney Disease

Living with a chronic condition like kidney disease can be challenging. However, with the right resources, support, and attitude, you can still lead a fulfilling life.

A. Emotional and Psychological Impact

It's natural to experience a range of emotions when living with CKD - from fear and anxiety to sadness and depression. These feelings are valid and normal. It's crucial to seek professional help if your emotional health is affecting your daily life. Therapists and counsellors can provide strategies to cope with these feelings and improve your mental well-being.

B. Support Systems

Support from loved ones, friends, and healthcare providers can make a huge difference when living with CKD. Don't hesitate to reach out to these networks when you need them. Support groups, both in person and online, can connect you with others who are experiencing similar challenges. These communities often provide comfort, reduce feelings of isolation, and offer practical advice.

C. Success Stories

(Video) Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 4 (CKD)

While living with CKD presents challenges, it's important to remember that many people successfully manage this condition and lead full lives. Hearing the stories of those who have navigated a similar path can be encouraging and inspiring. Many health organizations and advocacy groups share these stories to provide hope and practical advice to others with the same condition.

Living with CKD requires strength, but remember, you're not alone. Many resources and support systems are available to assist you on your journey. Taking one day at a time, reaching out for support when needed, and taking care of your physical and emotional health can significantly improve your quality of life.

Prevention of Chronic Kidney Disease

Preventing chronic kidney disease might not always be possible, especially if you have inherent risk factors such as family history. However, certain measures can significantly lower your risk or slow the progression of the disease if you already have it. Here are some preventative strategies:

A. Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

  1. Healthy diet: Consuming a balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, lean proteins, and whole grains, while low in sodium and processed foods, can help maintain healthy blood pressure and glucose levels, crucial for kidney health.

  2. Regular exercise: Regular physical activity can help control blood pressure and manage weight, both key factors in preventing CKD.

  3. Hydration: While you need to be cautious not to overhydrate, sufficient water intake helps your kidneys clear sodium, urea, and toxins from your body, which in turn lowers the risk of CKD.

B. Control Risk Conditions

  1. Manage diabetes: If you have diabetes, controlling your blood sugar levels can prevent damage to your kidneys.

  2. Control high blood pressure: Hypertension can cause kidney damage over time. Regular monitoring and management of blood pressure is crucial for preventing CKD.

C. Avoid Substances Harmful to Your Kidneys

  1. Limit alcohol and quit smoking: Both tobacco and alcohol can affect your kidneys' functioning and lead to kidney damage.

  2. Be careful with over-the-counter medications: Regular use of certain pain medications like NSAIDs can damage your kidneys over time. Always check with your doctor or pharmacist if you're unsure.

D. Regular Screening

If you're at risk for CKD, regular kidney function screenings can help catch any issues early, when they're much easier to manage or treat.

Prevention is a powerful tool in the fight against chronic kidney disease. It's about making sustainable lifestyle choices and managing existing health conditions effectively. By following these guidelines, you can greatly contribute to keeping your kidneys healthy and functioning optimally.

Remember, every step counts. Your actions today can make a significant difference to your health tomorrow.

Chronic Kidney Disease Stages

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) progresses in stages, with each stage reflecting a different level of kidney function and requiring specific treatment and management. The stages of CKD are based on the Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR), a measure of kidney function.

Stage 1: Kidney damage with normal or increased GFR (≥90 mL/min)

At this earliest stage, there's evidence of kidney damage, but kidney function is normal or high. The kidney damage is detected through protein in the urine or evidence of physical damage. Treatment focuses on managing the cause of the kidney damage, such as diabetes or hypertension, to prevent further harm.

(Video) Stage 5 Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)

Stage 2: Kidney damage with mildly decreased GFR (60-89 mL/min)

At this stage, the kidney function is slightly reduced, but you might not have any symptoms yet. Just like in stage 1, treatment is focused on controlling the condition causing the kidney damage and monitoring for potential progression of the disease.

Stage 3: Moderate decrease in GFR (30-59 mL/min)

At stage 3, kidney function has decreased more significantly, and you might start to experience symptoms like fatigue, fluid retention, and changes in urination. Treatment involves managing underlying conditions, maintaining a healthy lifestyle, and potentially starting medication to control symptoms and slow the progression of the disease.

Stage 4: Severe reduction in GFR (15-29 mL/min)

Stage 4 is advanced CKD, and symptoms will be more noticeable. In addition to managing underlying conditions and symptoms, treatment at this stage often includes preparation for kidney replacement therapy (dialysis or a kidney transplant).

Stage 5: Kidney failure (GFR <15 mL/min)

At stage 5, the kidneys have lost nearly all their function. This stage is also known as end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Treatment typically requires kidney replacement therapy—either dialysis or a kidney transplant.

It's important to note that the progression of CKD can be slowed with early diagnosis and proper treatment, emphasizing the need for regular check-ups, especially for people with risk factors like diabetes, hypertension, or a family history of kidney disease.


Chronic kidney disease is a profound health concern affecting millions of people worldwide. However, with knowledge and understanding, we can combat this silent disease. This guide has sought to provide an overview of CKD, from its complex nature and risk factors, through its diagnosis, treatment, and prevention.

Living with CKD can be challenging, but with the right support, resources, and management strategies, individuals with this condition can lead healthy and fulfilling lives. And while you may not have complete control over all risk factors, many—such as diet, exercise, and managing existing health conditions—are well within your grasp. Remember, your lifestyle choices today can significantly impact your kidney health tomorrow.

Let's pledge to prioritize our kidney health, encourage early detection, and spread awareness about this silent disease. Through understanding, action, and compassion, we can lessen the impact of chronic kidney disease and create a healthier future. After all, every journey begins with a single step, and every step towards better kidney health counts.

To further your understanding and exploration of chronic kidney disease, you may find these resources and references helpful:

  1. National Kidney Foundation (NKF): An invaluable resource for patients, caregivers, and healthcare providers, offering information on kidney disease, treatment options, diet recommendations, and more.

  2. American Kidney Fund (AKF): Provides financial assistance to kidney patients in need and offers educational resources for the prevention and management of kidney disease.

  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) – Chronic Kidney Disease Basics: Offers a comprehensive overview of chronic kidney disease, its risk factors, and preventative measures.

  4. Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO): Provides globally applicable clinical practice guidelines for the prevention, diagnosis, evaluation, treatment, and management of kidney disease.


  1. "Chronic Kidney Disease Basics." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services,

  2. "Chronic Kidney Disease." Mayo Clinic,

  3. "Preventing Chronic Kidney Disease." National Kidney Foundation,

    (Video) My Journey Living with Kidney Disease: Patient Perspectives | American Kidney Fund

  4. "Living with Kidney Disease." American Kidney Fund,

  5. KDIGO 2012 Clinical Practice Guideline for the Evaluation and Management of Chronic Kidney Disease. Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes (KDIGO),


How do you deal with chronic kidney disease? ›

  1. Control your blood pressure. ...
  2. Meet your blood glucose goal if you have diabetes. ...
  3. Work with your health care team to monitor your kidney health. ...
  4. Take medicines as prescribed. ...
  5. Work with a dietitian to develop a meal plan. ...
  6. Make physical activity part of your routine. ...
  7. Aim for a healthy weight. ...
  8. Get enough sleep.

What is the best thing to drink for your kidneys? ›

Water: Water is simply the best drink you can have! Water is a zero-calorie, perfectly hydrating, cheap drink. If you are in the earlier stages of kidney disease, choosing water most of the time to quench your thirst will keep your body and kidneys functioning well.

Which of the following are important management goals for patients with chronic kidney disease? ›

Regardless of CKD stage, the three main nursing care goals are:
  • prevent or slow disease progression.
  • promote physical and psychosocial well-being.
  • monitor disease and treatment complications.
Mar 3, 2020

What foods are good for healing kidneys? ›

10 Superfoods for People with Kidney Disease
  • Cabbage. With abundant phytochemicals, this cruciferous vegetable is filling and nutritious. ...
  • Red Peppers. Also low in potassium but high in flavor. ...
  • Cauliflower. ...
  • Blueberries. ...
  • Egg Whites. ...
  • Garlic. ...
  • Fish. ...
  • Red Grapes.

How do you stop kidney disease from getting worse? ›

How to Slow the Progression of Chronic Kidney Disease
  1. Control your blood pressure. ...
  2. Monitor your blood glucose. ...
  3. Eat a kidney-friendly diet and exercise regularly. ...
  4. Use caution when taking over-the-counter supplements and medicines. ...
  5. Stay informed.

Does chronic kidney disease ever improve? ›

There's no cure for chronic kidney disease (CKD), but treatment can help relieve the symptoms and stop it getting worse. Your treatment will depend on the stage of your CKD. The main treatments are: lifestyle changes – to help you stay as healthy as possible.

What foods irritate the kidneys? ›

If you have kidney disease, it's important to watch your intake of sodium, potassium, and phosphorus. Items that contain high amounts include cola, brown rice, bananas, processed meats, and dried fruits.

What heals kidneys fast? ›

Vitamin C

Vitamins and minerals are powerful antioxidants. Vitamin C helps dissolve kidney stones easily. Foods rich in vitamin C promote better kidney health such as, citrus fruits like orange, cucumbers, broccoli are effective in keeping the kidney healthy.

What drinks are hardest on kidneys? ›

Sodas. According to the American Kidney Fund, a recent study suggests that drinking two or more carbonated sodas, diet or regular, each day may increase your risk for chronic kidney disease. Carbonated and energy drinks have both been linked to the formation of kidney stones.

What color is urine when your kidneys are failing? ›

When your kidneys are failing, a high concentration and accumulation of substances lead to brown, red, or purple urine. Studies suggest the urine color is due to abnormal protein or sugar as well as high numbers of cellular casts and red and white blood cells.

What medications can damage your kidneys? ›

Your kidneys could be damaged if you take large amounts of over-the-counter medications, such as aspirin, naproxen and ibuprofen. None of these medicines should be taken daily or regularly without first talking to your healthcare provider.

What are 5 foods to help detox kidneys? ›

A person can also try adding these kidney-friendly foods to their diet:
  • berries.
  • citrus fruits, such as lemons, limes, and oranges.
  • apples.
  • low-fat dairy products.
  • vegetables.
  • whole grains, such as barley, brown rice, and oatmeal.
  • lean meats, including chicken and seafood.
Jun 5, 2019

What vitamins help kidneys? ›

Special renal vitamins are usually prescribed to kidney patients to provide the extra water soluble vitamins needed. Renal vitamins contain vitamins B1, B2, B6, B12, folic acid, niacin, pantothenic acid, biotin and a small dose of vitamin C.

What fruit helps kidneys? ›

Pineapple, cranberries, red grapes, and apples are all kidney-friendly fruits with anti-inflammatory properties.

What not to do for kidney health? ›

10 Common Habits That May Harm Your Kidneys
  • Overusing Painkillers. ...
  • Eating Processed Foods. ...
  • Not Drinking Enough Water. ...
  • Missing Out on Sleep. ...
  • Eating Too Much Meat. ...
  • Eating Too Many Foods High in Sugar. ...
  • Lighting Up. ...
  • Drinking Alcohol in Excess.
Jun 27, 2016

What speeds up kidney disease? ›

The health implications of chronic kidney disease will also depend on how healthy someone is otherwise. For that reason, doctors also look into conditions that may make chronic kidney disease get worse faster – including heart disease, poorly regulated high blood pressure or diabetes.

What fights kidney disease? ›

What can I do to keep my kidneys healthy?
  • Make healthy food choices. ...
  • Make physical activity part of your routine. ...
  • Aim for a healthy weight. ...
  • Get enough sleep. ...
  • Stop smoking. ...
  • Limit alcohol intake link. ...
  • Explore stress-reducing activities. ...
  • Manage diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.

What makes chronic kidney disease worse? ›

Conditions such as high blood pressure and diabetes take a toll on kidney function by damaging these filtering units and collecting tubules and causing scarring.

Can you live a full life with chronic kidney disease? ›

Many people with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are able to live long lives without being unduly affected by the condition. Although it's not possible to repair damage that has already happened to your kidneys, CKD will not necessarily get worse. CKD only reaches an advanced stage in a small proportion of people.

What is the number one cause of chronic kidney disease? ›

In the United States, diabetes and high blood pressure are the leading causes of kidney failure, accounting for 3 out of 4 new cases.

What not to drink with kidney disease? ›

If you have kidney disease and diabetes, it's best to limit your intake of fruit juices and other sugar-sweetened beverages, such as soda. These drinks tend to be high in added sugar, which can cause rapid spikes in blood sugar.

Is peanut butter good for the kidneys? ›

Is peanut butter bad for kidneys? A. According to a study, peanuts contain oxalates, a mineral that can induce the development of kidney stones. Therefore, even though peanuts are heart-healthy and rich in protein, people with kidney disease should not consume them.

Does cranberry juice clean your kidneys? ›

So how does cranberry juice help? It can prevent bacteria from sticking to the walls of your kidneys, which helps prevent an infection from forming in the first place.

Can kidneys rebuild themselves? ›

A kidney is an organ with relatively low basal cellular regenerative potential. However, renal cells have a pronounced ability to proliferate after injury, which undermines that the kidney cells are able to regenerate under induced conditions.

Is Cranberry Juice Good for kidney disease? ›

Cranberries are low in potassium and high in vitamin C, making them another great choice for people with kidney disease. Cranberry juice has also been shown to help prevent urinary tract infections, which are typical for people with kidney disease.

What sodas are OK for kidneys? ›

Clear sodas do not contain as much phosphorus and are better if a person with advanced kidney disease wants to drink a soda.

Does clear pee mean your kidneys are good? ›

Colorless or clear urine can be caused by drinking an excess of water, or it may signal a problem with the kidneys. If your urine is consistently clear or absent of color, you should see a doctor.

Is clear pee good? ›

Is clear urine always a good thing? In most cases, clear urine is a sign that you're well hydrated. And that's a positive thing because good hydration helps your body function at its best. But, in some cases, clear pee may mean that you're drinking too much water and you're too hydrated.

How do kidneys affect bowel movements? ›

Constipation is highly prevalent in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and is primarily characterized by decreased intestinal motility. This chronic disorder affects the quality of life of patients.

Which drug is high toxic to kidney? ›

NSAIDs, diuretics, and ACE inhibitors are potential drugs that cause kidney damage. Certain medications administered in hospital settings, like aminoglycoside antibiotics and vancomycin, can also damage the kidneys.

Which blood pressure meds are bad for kidneys? ›

Diuretics. Doctors use these medicines, also known as water pills, to treat high blood pressure and some kinds of swelling. They help your body get rid of extra fluid. But they can sometimes dehydrate you, which can be bad for your kidneys.

Which painkiller is safe for kidneys? ›

Acetaminophen remains the drug of choice for occasional use in patients with kidney disease because of bleeding complications that may occur when these patients use aspirin.

What vegetable cleans the kidney? ›

Asparagus is low-calorie food and is an excellent source of fibre, vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E and vitamin K. It can act as a mild diuretic, clearing toxins and excess fluid out of your kidneys faster. It is soothing to the tubes in the kidneys and is known to prevent stones in the kidney and bladder.

Is pineapple good for kidney? ›

Pineapples provide many benefits to kidney health, specifically because they contain Bromelain and vitamin C. Both Vitamin C and Bromelain are anti-inflammatory agents that can help reduce the inflammation in the body caused by damaged or diseased cells.

How can I reverse my kidneys naturally? ›

While it's not possible to reverse kidney damage, you can take steps to slow it down. Taking prescribed medicine, being physically active, and eating well will help. You'll also feel better and improve your overall well-being.

How can I raise my GFR fast? ›

Avoid processed foods and choose fresh fruits and vegetables instead. Follow a low-salt diet. Salt should be limited especially if you have high blood pressure, protein in your urine, or swelling, or difficulty breathing. Eating less than 2000 mg a day of sodium is recommended.

How do you reverse chronic kidney disease stage 5? ›

Kidney transplant—A successful kidney transplant is closest to natural kidney function and is considered one of the most effective treatments for end stage renal disease (ESRD). With a kidney transplant you receive a new, healthy kidney from a living or deceased donor through surgery.

Are eggs good for kidneys? ›

Although egg yolks are very nutritious, they contain high amounts of phosphorus, making egg whites a better choice for people following a renal diet. Egg whites provide a high quality, kidney-friendly source of protein.

Can you live a normal life with chronic kidney disease? ›

Many people with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are able to live long lives without being unduly affected by the condition. Although it's not possible to repair damage that has already happened to your kidneys, CKD will not necessarily get worse.

What is the average life expectancy for chronic kidney disease? ›

According to the National Kidney Foundation, the average life expectancy for a patient on dialysis is 5-10 years. Though for someone between the ages of 70 and 74, life expectancy is closer to four years on dialysis.

How long can you live with chronic kidney disease? ›

Not all patients have serious issues with the early onset of kidney damage, and most of the patients with CKD may live long without any serious complications. It is estimated that an average person may live for an extra 30 years following diagnosis.

How long can you live with chronic kidney disease symptoms? ›

Many people with ESRD who receive dialysis regularly or have a kidney transplant can often live long, healthy, active lives. The life expectancy for a person receiving dialysis is around 5–10 years, though many live for 20–30 years.

What foods are bad for kidneys? ›

If you have kidney disease, it's important to watch your intake of sodium, potassium, and phosphorus. Items that contain high amounts include cola, brown rice, bananas, processed meats, and dried fruits.

Is chronic kidney disease a terminal illness? ›

Chronic kidney disease can progress to end-stage kidney failure, which is fatal without artificial filtering (dialysis) or a kidney transplant.

Can you improve your kidney function? ›

Exercise may help kidney health

Being active and having a healthy body weight is also important to kidney health. Some studies show kidney function improves with exercise. Talk with your healthcare professional or dietitian if you need to lose weight.

Can you live 20 years with stage 3 kidney disease? ›

When diagnosed and managed early, stage 3 CKD has a longer life expectancy than more advanced stages of kidney disease. Estimates can vary based on age and lifestyle. One such estimate says that the average life expectancy is 24 years in men who are 40, and 28 in women of the same age group.

How fast does kidney disease progress? ›

Kidney disease progresses at different rates for different people, and it can take between two and five years to pass between different stages. Kidney disease stages are measured by using a blood test to check the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR).

What is chronic kidney disease terminal stage? ›

Definition. End-stage kidney disease (ESKD) is the last stage of long-term (chronic) kidney disease. This is when your kidneys can no longer support your body's needs. End-stage kidney disease is also called end-stage renal disease (ESRD).

What is the fastest way to flush your kidneys? ›

How to cleanse the kidneys
  1. Drink more water. Drinking enough fluid every day is essential to a person's overall health. ...
  2. Reduce sodium intake. ...
  3. Make dietary changes.
Jun 5, 2019

How long can a 70 year old live with kidney failure? ›

Kidney dialysis life expectancy in the elderly depends on other medical conditions and how well they follow their treatment plan. The average life expectancy is 5-10 years but many live on dialysis for 20 or 30 years.

What vitamins can be hard on the kidneys? ›

You may need to avoid some vitamins and minerals if you have kidney disease. Some of these include vitamins A, E and K. These vitamins are more likely to build up in your body and can cause harm if you have too much. Over time, they can cause dizziness, nausea, and even death.

What is a normal GFR for a 70 year old? ›

In the general population, approximately 38% of adults aged 70 or older have an estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) < 60 ml/min/1.73 m2, with most having moderate reductions in eGFR in the 30-59 ml/min/1.73 m2 range (1).

What are the worsening symptoms of chronic kidney disease? ›

As chronic kidney disease progresses to end-stage renal disease, signs and symptoms might include:
  • Nausea.
  • Vomiting.
  • Loss of appetite.
  • Fatigue and weakness.
  • Changes in how much you urinate.
  • Chest pain, if fluid builds up around the lining of the heart.
  • Shortness of breath, if fluid builds up in the lungs.
Oct 12, 2021

How do you know what stage of chronic kidney disease you have? ›

Doctors determine the stage of kidney disease using the glomerular filtration rate (GFR), a math formula using a person's age, gender, and their serum creatinine level (identified through a blood test). Creatinine, a waste product that comes from muscle activity, is a key indicator of kidney function.


1. Kidney Transplant: Navigating the Waitlist | American Kidney Fund
2. The Past, Present and Future of Testing for Kidney Disease | American Kidney Fund
3. Coping with Chronic Kidney Disease: A Guide for Children and Young Adults
4. Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3: Causes, Symptoms, Treatment, Renal Diet, Life Expectancy & more
(Dadvice TV - Kidney Health Coach)
5. The Truth About chronic kidney disease - Debunking Common Myths and Misconceptions
(Healthy Creative Idea)
6. Ask the Experts: How to Prevent and Treat Kidney Disease
(American Diabetes Association)


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