The month of March typically known for celebrating Mardi Gras and St. Patrick’s Day, is also Kidney Awareness Month. The kidneys are our body’s powerful chemical factories that balance the body’s fluids, remove waste products from the body, and control the production of red blood cells. Chronic kidney disease is defined as an abnormality or “marker” such as noticeable amounts of protein in urine. The disease can be caused by factors like diabetes, high blood pressure or inherited through genetic traits in a family.
Those who are at an increased risk for kidney disease are minorities (African American, Asian, and Hispanic), elders, and people suffering from diabetes and hypertension. Testing for kidney disease can be done at your doctor’s office through a urine sample that checks for protein amounts. Fortunately, many kidney diseases can be successfully treated and managed with proper medical attention. This is why it is so important that you get tested regularly. Usually once a year. Kidney disease can often go without symptoms, making it practically unnoticeable. Some symptoms may include puffiness around eyes, hands and feet, blood in urine, and painful urination.
Treatment of kidney disease can include dialysis (purification of blood), medications, and kidney transplant. The thought of surgery may seem intense but transplants have the highest success rates of all kidney treatments. If you interested in learning more about kidney diseases donations and events in your area please refer to https://www.kidney.org/transplantation for information. Any questions you may have about a checkup or testing feel free to call Dr. Bernett L. Johnson Jr. Sayre Health Center at 215-474-4444.