What is Chronic Renal Failure?
Chronic renal failure is a long-term irreversible decrease in kidney function.
In up to 30 per cent of patients the cause is unknown. Other causes include diabetes, inflammation, polycystic kidney disease, renovascular disease and certain medicines. Risk also increases after the age of 60.
How common is Chronic Renal Failure?
UK estimates suggest that 8.8% of the population of Great Britain and Northern Ireland have symptomatic chronic renal failure.
What are the symptoms of Chronic Renal Failure?
Chronic renal failure is usually symptomless in the early stages, but can be discovered from blood or urine tests done for other reasons. High blood pressure usually occurs with it. Symptoms of advanced kidney failure include tiredness, itching, loss of appetite, fluid retention and weakness.
How is Chronic Renal Failure treated?
Chronic renal failure is not reversible. Treatment commonly has to be non-specific to the cause of renal failure itself. Measures will be taken to lower blood pressure to slow the progress of kidney failure. Changes in diet may be recommended to reduce salt intake, and vitamin supplements taken to treat related conditions.
Dialysis or kidney transplants may be necessary in the latter stages of the disease.
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