Considering all of the important functions the kidneys perform in the body, it goes without saying that there are a lot of diseases associated with them. Kidneys, the pair of small organs at about the middle of the back, do many things including filter blood, send minerals back into the body, help with blood pressure, and start the process of removing excess waste from the body.
With the body aging and not able to do things such as process some minerals or absorb vitamin D as well as when they were younger, it’s even more important for elderly care to manage the kidneys. This can include knowing some of the side effects of prescription medications and talking to a physician about any problems the senior may be experiencing.
Kidney disease can come in two forms: acute and chronic. In acute situations, the kidneys can again function after treatment. Acute problems come from things like infections and slight injury.
In chronic, the kidneys are likely permanently damaged. Some ways the kidneys can have chronic problems could be from medical issues, blockages, genetic factors, medications, and diabetes.
One of the most extreme problems the kidneys can have is failure. In kidney failure, the kidneys are not able to properly filter the blood. This can lead to damage to other organs.
Kidney failure can come from any number of issues though basically, if the blood stops going to the kidneys or urine can’t go out of them for any length of time, it interrupts the function of the organ. Interruption of blood and/or urine flow can occur from things like heart attacks, blockages, liver failure, blood clots, kidney stones, cancers, and dehydration.
Similar to other kidney diseases, kidney failure comes in acute and chronic form. The acute version is when the blood and/or urine is able to be returned to the kidneys before there is too much damage. If caught in time, there is a chance the kidneys can again function properly.
In the chronic scenario such as if blood has been lacking too long or there is damage to the kidneys that cannot be repaired, the kidneys cannot do their job and will likely not be able to function correctly again. With chronic kidney failure, a range of symptoms can occur from restricted urine flow to nausea and even coma. In chronic kidney problems, solutions could include dialysis or a kidney transplant.
Prescriptions and over the counter medications can affect the kidneys. It is important to use medications correctly and to discuss options with a physician. Getting regular kidney check-ups and getting a physician’s advice on what things can be done can help the elderly care for their kidneys and possibly keep them functional for a longer period of time.