Chronic kidney disease occurs when the kidneys cannot filter excess water and waste out of the body while making urine. The cause of the disease dictates the type of treatment. High blood pressure and diabetes put you at greater risk for kidney disease. If diabetes is the cause, the first sign of associated kidney disease is protein in the urine from albumin, which should stay in the bloodstream and not in the urine. Kidney disease caused by diabetes is diabetic kidney disease.
Kidney disease caused by hypertension causes damage to the blood vessels in the kidneys, causing improper filtration. Other causes of kidney disease include genetics, infection, drug toxicities, lupus, disorders of the immune system, and lead poisoning.
If you have diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, or a family history of kidney disease, blood, and urine testing is recommended to determine if the kidneys are functioning appropriately. We offer Kidney function tests at DMMC for Kes. 3,000/-. Ensure you have your kidneys checked at least once a year.
The second major cause of kidney failure is poorly controlled blood pressure. Many people with diabetes also tend to have high blood pressure. Your kidneys and your circulatory system depend on each other for good health. The kidneys help filter wastes and extra fluids from blood, and they use a lot of blood vessels to do so. When the blood vessels become damaged, the nephrons that filter your blood don’t receive the oxygen and nutrients they need to function well. This is why high blood pressure (HBP or hypertension) is the second leading cause of kidney failure. Over time, uncontrolled high blood pressure can cause arteries around the kidneys to narrow, weaken or harden. These damaged arteries cannot deliver enough blood to the kidney tissue.
Over time, uncontrolled high blood pressure can cause arteries around the kidneys to narrow, weaken or harden. These damaged arteries cannot deliver enough blood to the kidney tissue.
Damaged kidney arteries do not filter blood well. Kidneys have tiny, finger-like nephrons that filter your blood. Each nephron receives its blood supply through tiny hair-like capillaries, the smallest of all blood vessels. When the arteries become damaged, the nephrons do not receive the essential oxygen and nutrients — and the kidneys lose their ability to filter blood and regulate the fluid, hormones, acids, and salts in the body.
Damaged kidneys fail to regulate blood pressure. Healthy kidneys produce a hormone called aldosterone to help the body regulate blood pressure. Kidney damage and uncontrolled high blood pressure each contribute to a negative spiral. As more arteries become blocked and stop functioning, the kidneys eventually fail.
High blood pressure (HBP, or hypertension) is a symptomless “silent killer” that quietly damages blood vessels and leads to serious health problems.
Managing High Blood Pressure
While there is no cure, using medications as prescribed and making lifestyle changes can enhance your quality of life and reduce your risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, and more.
Make changes that matter:
- Eat a well-balanced diet that’s low or with no salt (I recommend DASH diet)
- Limit or stop alcohol
- Enjoy regular physical activity
- Manage stress
- Maintain a healthy weight
- Quit smoking
- Take your medications properly
- Work together with your doctor
Know your numbers
Is your blood pressure in a healthy or unhealthy range? The best way to know is to get your blood pressure checked. You can purchase Omron BP Monitor from DMMC for Kes. 3800/-
Kidney failure due to high blood pressure is a cumulative process that can take years to develop. But you can limit your risk by managing your blood pressure.
You should monitor your blood pressure regularly if you are diagnosed with high blood pressure. Maintaining an awareness of your numbers can alert you to any changes and help you detect patterns. Tracking your results over time will also reveal if the changes you’ve made are working.
Don’t let high blood pressure damage your kidneys.