THE IMPORTANCE OF THE KIDNEYS FOR THE HUMAN BODY

Humans need to have Kidneys because of the vast and diverse quantities of food and liquid they consume on a daily basis. This phenomena means that the quantities of water, salts, and acids present in the human body will also vary daily. Additionally, the human body is always converting the food and liquids that humans consume into energy – the byproduct of this metabolic process is harmful waste that must leave the human body through some process.

The daily metabolic process means that the amounts of fluid, electrolytes, and acids in the body is always present and accumulating. The human body must get rid of these harmful substances because the accumulation of these wastes in the body can lead to severe and chronic illnesses, and even death.

The Kidneys filter and flush harmful acidic and toxic substances out of the body. They simultaneously regulate and maintain the correct levels and balance of water, electrolytes, and acids.

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How to cure the kidneys?

If caught early, any type of kidney disease, even acute kidney failure, is 100% treatable. Problems arise when people delay treatment of kidney disease – this can lead to severe illness and even death! Acute kidney failure, and any type of kidney failure for that matter, is managed through a four step program:

1. Correcting or treating the cause(s) of kidney failure

2. Using medication and supporting measures to treat kidney failure

3. Changing the diet

4. Putting the person on dialysis – sometimes for life

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Correcting and treating the causes of kidney failure

Treatment of failing kidneys is only possible with a proper diagnosis because this is the only way doctors can determine what the appropriate treatment program should be. It is necessary to treat the underlying causes of kidney failure because this is the only way the kidneys will improve. Underlying causes can be: hypotension, infection, urinary tract obstruction, etc.

When medicines are used to treat kidney failure

Medicines that are used to treat kidney failure can support the kidneys in their primary functions of purifying blood and making red blood cells, and they can prevent or treat any arising complications.

Certain medicines like NSAIDs should not be used for patients in kidney failure. Doctors may sometimes prescribe certain diuretics like Lasix to drain off excess fluid. This reduces swelling and any breathlessness the person may experience. Doctors may even prescribe certain medications which are designed to raise or lower blood pressure if it is too high or low, and control nausea, vomiting, blood potassium, convulsions, and reduce breathlessness.

When diet is used to treat kidney failure

Sometimes following a certain diet can prevent or reduce the severity of kidney failure in patients. Doctors will advise patients to follow a diet that usually restricts daily fluid intake, taking into account the amount of urine the patients body produces daily, and his or her current fluid status. This measure can substantially reduce swelling and shortness of breath. Patients will also be advised to avoid foods rich in potassium like: fruits, fruit juices, dry fruits, etc…to prevent the blood potassium levels from going too high – this can lead to acute kidney failure, and deadly complications. Patients in acute kidney failure should consume no more than 2 grams of salt per day, because this will reduce their swelling, lower their blood pressure, and help control breathlessness. Patients must always ensure that they eat a balanced diet that will give them the calories and nutrients they need to survive, because this is key in treating acute kidney failure.

Dialysis to treat acute kidney failure

Dialysis is a process by which a machine filters the patients blood. The blood enters the machine through IV needles which are stuck into the patients arms, the machine filters the blood, and then re-injects it back into the body. This process can either be short or long term, depending on the stage of kidney failure the patient is in, and whether or not the patient can receive a transplanted kidney. The machine doing dialysis also removes excess fluid from the blood, and corrects acidosis, and electrolyte imbalances.

Patients undergoing dialysis receive one of two types: hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Patients with acute kidney failure receive dialysis only when other treatment options fail. Dialysis can dramatically improve the quality of, and extend the length of the patients life. Patients usually need dialysis when they experience severe swelling, high levels of potassium in the blood which can not be controlled any other way, or severe acidosis.

The length of time a patient will need to undergo dialysis depends on the severity of their kidney failure, and whether or not they are a candidate for a kidney transplant. Some patients only need dialysis until their kidney functions completely recover – this is generally a time period of one to four weeks, however, some patients need dialysis for life because their degree of kidney failure is severe, and irreversible.

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