Kidneys & Kidney Disease
Here’s an amazing fact: your entire blood supply flows through your kidneys every two minutes. Those hard-working kidneys filter the blood to remove waste products and fluids. They also make hormones that help you make red blood cells, control blood pressure, and build strong bones. See more about how kidneys work here.
Kidney Disease is Serious
Your kidneys are vital to your health. So when kidney disease strikes, it can be very serious. When your kidneys can’t do their job as filters, waste and extra fluid build up in your blood, which makes you sick. The kidneys also lose the ability to produce hormones that assist in making red blood cells, controlling blood pressure, and maintaining healthy bones. When kidneys fail, dialysis can sustain life by using a machine to replace kidney function. Take a closer look at the people who make up your ESRD health care team.
Chronic Kidney Disease
Most people with kidney problems have chronic kidney disease (CKD). CKD is normally a long process where the kidneys slowly lose function. While many diseases or conditions can damage kidneys, there are two main causes for most cases.
End Stage Renal Disease
When both kidneys have stopped, or almost stopped, doing their job, a person has reached end-stage renal disease (ESRD). The body fills up with extra fluid and waste products that the kidneys would normally filter out. This condition is called uremia.
Coping with Kidney Disease
You may feel many different emotions as you live with your disease. While your feelings are uniquely yours, you are not alone. Understanding the emotions around your disease, and learning ways to cope with those feelings, can help.
Treatment Options for Kidney Disease
There are four main kidney disease treatment options for end-stage renal failure. You are a unique individual, so you and your doctor will choose a treatment that considers your body, health, lifestyle, and what is available in your area.
Treatment Options Program
Learn about our free Treatment Options Program classes to help you make the right decisions for your health and lifestyle.