Chronic Kidney Disease Symptoms

  • Symptoms

    Many symptoms of chronic kidney disease occur late in the disease process Table 02. Unfortunately, symptoms of CKD do not appear until the kidneys are operating at a fraction of their previous capacity. When symptoms do occur, they can include fatigue caused by anemia, shortness of breath, bad breath caused by a build-up of waste in the saliva and sweat, an unpleasant taste in the mouth, and itchy skin. Fluid imbalance in the body can cause swelling, high blood pressure, and symptoms of fatigue.

    Table 2.   Symptoms of Chronic Kidney Disease

    Fatigue due to Anemia, or reduction in red blood cell production
    Bone and joint problems
    Puffiness (edema) or swelling in the arms and feet
    Bloody or foamy urine
    Headaches
    High blood pressure
    Shortness of breath
    Itchy skin
    Lower back pain
    Nausea, vomiting
    Loss of appetite
    Frequent hiccups
    Easy bleeding or bruising
    Nail abnormalities
    Skin discoloration
  • Risk Factors

    Because the greatest number of CKD cases result from hypertension or diabetes, a family history of these diseases may put you at increased risk for CKD Table 03.

    Inherited kidney diseases, such as autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease and Alport syndrome, may lead to CKD.

    Compared to the general population, African Americans are 3.9 times more likely to have CKD that progresses to total kidney failure, and are 6.7 times more likely to have that kidney failure that is associated with hypertension.

    Table 3.  Risk Factors for Chronic Kidney Disease

    Uncontrolled hypertension
    Diabetes mellitus
    Urinary tract obstruction (kidney stone)
    Long-term use/abuse of pain killers
    Cigarette smoking
    Poor circulation
    Inherited kidney diseases (autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease, Alport syndrome, congenital abnormalities)

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