Your kidney is among the vital organs in your body, playing a critical role in cleaning your blood. However, sometimes this bean-shaped organ can malfunction, causing kidney disease. This is a common condition affecting many people globally, which can happen gradually or suddenly. Fortunately, this condition is treatable, and skilled nephrologists such as Jonathan Pankow, MD of Houston Kidney Specialists Center can help you diagnose and manage kidney disease effectively.
Knowing when to seek medical attention is important, as treating a disease in its early stage increases the treatment procedure’s effectiveness. Here are the top five least known signs of kidney disease that should help you know when to seek medical attention.
Changes in Urination Patterns
Although you may experience changes in your urination patterns due to many health complications, it is a common kidney disease sign where you can experience reduced or increased frequency. You can experience changes in your urinary function where your urine can have an unfamiliar or odd odor. Your urine can also change in appearance, becoming paler or darker. In other cases, you can experience sudden pain while urinating, and the urine becomes foamy. You can also discover blood in the urine. If you are experiencing these symptoms, please seek medical attention for kidney disease.
Lower Back Pain
Kidney disease is one of the commonly known causes of lower back pain. Therefore, if you are experiencing discomfort in your lower back, don’t always be quick to take over-the-counter painkillers. It may be more complicated than you think. Speak to your doctor, who will diagnose your condition and catch the kidney disease if it is the cause of your pain. Note that lower back pain caused by kidney disease can begin on one or both sides, and you may experience some ease when you urinate.
With your kidney not functioning well, your blood is impure, containing wastes from your body. Therefore, you can experience swelling or edema in your face, ankles, legs, feet, or hands. In extremely severe conditions, your lungs can be greatly affected. Therefore, if you observe swelling in these parts of your body, seek expert care before you think of waiting for it to fade away on its own.
Because your kidney is not functioning well, some toxins can build up on your skin, causing some issues such as dryness and serious itching. Although there are topical treatment procedures to manage these conditions, you may not get relief until the underlying condition, which is kidney disease, is managed. Therefore, it is not just sun exposure that is harmful to your skin. It is good to seek expert care who will look deeper for other causes of your skin condition.
Your kidney does not only clean your blood off impurities. It also has a vital function of producing erythropoietin, which is essential for producing oxygen-carrying blood cells. Therefore, when the kidney malfunctions, there will be a deficiency of the red blood cells in your body, resulting in conditions such as anemia or iron deficiency. As a result, you can experience chronic fatigue and weakness. You can also feel cold, even in warm environments.
These symptoms can be associated with other health complications. However, they can also be an indication of kidney disease. Therefore, please don’t ignore such symptoms but report to your provider at Houston Kidney Specialists Center.