Understanding Acute Kidney Injury and How to Recognize It

doctor diagnosing patient with kidney pain

Oftentimes, when we feel a slight pain in our kidneys, we run to the internet to identify the culprit. But when we do so, we find ourselves overwhelmed with the possible causes of our discomfort, not to mention stories of people who suffered from a certain disease.

Acute kidney injury and how to know if you have it will be made clear in this article so you can skip the extra research and know whether it is a false alarm or not.

What is Acute Kidney Injury?

Also known as acute renal failure, this injury is a sudden decrease in the functioning of your kidneys. This happens when waste products and fluids build up in your body due to the inability of the kidneys to filter these substances out. But how do you know if your symptoms match this diagnosis?

The Main Symptoms of Acute Renal Failure

While discomfort is sure to be experienced, more identifiable symptoms can include the following:

  • Swelling (edema) in hands and feet
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Decreased urine output
  • Confusion
  • Fatigue
  • Itching skin
  • Difficulty breathing due to excess fluid in the lungs, and high blood pressure

Causes of Acute Kidney Injury

Knowing the causes of acute renal failure can help you be more aware and take preventive measures. Some causes of this condition include:

  • Dehydration: Not drinking enough fluids, especially during hot weather or when engaging in strenuous physical activities.
  • Medications: Some medications can be toxic to the kidneys such as antibiotics, nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) like ibuprofen and naproxen, and some chemotherapy drugs.
  • Infections: Urinary tract infections (UTIs) or sepsis can affect the functioning of the kidneys.
  • Blockages: Blockages in the urinary tract due to kidney stones, enlarged prostate, or cancer can cause acute renal failure.
  • Heart failure: When your heart is not able to pump enough blood into the kidneys, it can lead to renal failure.
  • Low blood pressure: This can cause a decrease in blood flow to the kidneys, leading to this kidney injury.
  • Blood clots: These can block blood vessels in the kidneys and reduce their ability to filter out waste products from the body.

Acute kidney injury is a serious medical condition that requires prompt treatment. It’s important to be aware of its causes and symptoms so you can seek medical attention as soon as possible. If you experience any of the symptoms mentioned above, it’s best to consult your doctor right away.

Take Control of Your Acute Kidney Injury with Texas Kidney Institute

At Texas Kidney Institute, we specialize in helping patients with chronic and acute kidney diseases. Our experts are dedicated to providing the best care and treatment for all types of kidney conditions. We offer a wide range of services such as dialysis treatments, medication management, nutrition counseling, and much more.

Contact us today to take control of your health and get the help you need for your acute renal failure. We are here to provide support and guidance every step of the way.