Kidney Failure (cont.)
Benjamin Wedro, MD, FACEP, FAAEM
Dr. Ben Wedro practices emergency medicine at Gundersen Clinic, a regional trauma center in La Crosse, Wisconsin. His background includes undergraduate and medical studies at the University of Alberta, a Family Practice internship at Queen's University in Kingston, Ontario and residency training in Emergency Medicine at the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center.
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD
Melissa Conrad Stöppler, MD, is a U.S. board-certified Anatomic Pathologist with subspecialty training in the fields of Experimental and Molecular Pathology. Dr. Stöppler's educational background includes a BA with Highest Distinction from the University of Virginia and an MD from the University of North Carolina. She completed residency training in Anatomic Pathology at Georgetown University followed by subspecialty fellowship training in molecular diagnostics and experimental pathology.
In this Article
- Kidney failure facts
- What are the kidneys?
- What causes kidney failure?
- What are the symptoms of kidney failure?
- How is kidney failure diagnosed?
- What is the treatment for kidney failure?
- Peritoneal dialysis
- Kidney transplantation
- What is the prognosis for someone with kidney failure?
- Find a local Nephrologist in your town
Diet is an important consideration for those with impaired kidney function. Consultation with a dietician may be helpful to understand what foods may or may not be appropriate.
Since the kidneys cannot easily remove excess water, salt, or potassium, these may need to be consumed in limited quantities. Foods high in potassium include bananas, apricots, and salt substitutes.
Phosphorus is a forgotten chemical that is associated with calcium metabolism and may be elevated in the body in kidney failure. Too much phosphorus can leech calcium from the bones and cause osteoporosis and fractures. Foods with high phosphorus content include milk, cheese, nuts, and cola drinks.
Medications may be used to help control some of the issues associated with kidney failure.
- Phosphorus-lowering medications (calcium carbonate
[Rocaltrol], sevelamer [Renagel])
- Red blood cell production stimulation (erythropoietin,
- Red blood cell production (iron supplements)
- Blood pressure medications
Once the kidneys fail completely, the treatment options are limited to dialysis or kidney replacement by transplantation.
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