Kidney Failure

What causes kidney failure? (Continued)

Renal causes of kidney failure (damage directly to the kidney itself) include:

Post renal causes of kidney failure (post=after + renal= kidney) are due to factors that affect outflow of the urine:

  • Obstruction of the bladder or the ureters can cause back pressure because the kidneys continue to produce urine, but the obstruction acts like a dam, and urine backs up into the kidneys. When the pressure increases high enough, the kidneys are damaged and shut down.
  • Prostatic hypertrophy or prostate cancer may block the urethra and prevents the bladder from emptying.
  • Tumors in the abdomen that surround and obstruct the ureters.
  • Kidney stones. Usually, kidney stones affect only one kidney and do not cause kidney failure. However, if there is only one kidney present, a kidney stone may cause the lone kidney to fail.

Chronic renal failure develops over months and years. The most common causes of chronic renal failure are related to:

Less common causes of chronic renal failure include:

Reviewed on 2/4/2013