6 Types of Common Kidney Diseases and Their Symptoms That You Should Know



Various diseases can affect the kidneys, causing them to become damaged.

Kidney damage will disrupt or eliminate its function. Kidneys have many important functions for the body.

Among the functions of the kidney, there are:

  • Maintains the balance of water and minerals (such as sodium, potassium, and phosphorus) in the blood.
  • Removes waste from the blood after digestion, muscle activity, and exposure to chemicals or drugs.
  • Makes renin, which the body uses to help regulate blood pressure.
  • It makes a chemical called erythropoietin, which encourages the body to make blood cells.
  • Makes the active form of vitamin D, which is needed for healthy bones and other body functions.
  • Filter all the blood in the body every 30 minutes. 

Among the many conditions that interfere with kidney function, there are several that commonly affect people.

In this article, we will review a number of kidney diseases that often occur.

Various Kidney Diseases

Here are the types of common kidney diseases and their symptoms that you should be aware of:

1. Chronic kidney disease

Chronic kidney disease slowly damages the organ over time.

The disease is divided into stages depending on the severity of kidney damage.

Diabetes is the most common cause of CKD.

Other causes include high blood pressure (hypertension), heart disease, and certain genetic conditions, such as polycystic kidney disease.

Also Read: 7 easy ways to avoid kidney failure and related diseases

Early stages of chronic kidney disease may not cause any symptoms.

The following symptoms of chronic kidney disease generally appear when there is severe organ damage:

  • Swelling in the legs, face, or hands
  • Muscle cramp
  • Dry and itchy skin
  • Chest pain
  • Numbness
  • Fatigue
  • Poor appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Nauseous
  • Vomiting
  • Hard to breathe

2. Acute kidney injury

Acute kidney injury is also known as acute kidney failure.

This disease causes kidney damage or failure in a short time.

Acute kidney failure can also damage other organs, such as the heart, lungs, and brain.

Causes may include severe burns, shock (a sudden drop in blood pressure), heavy bleeding, severe dehydration, or the use of medications.

It is more common in elderly people and hospitalized patients, especially those who require intensive care.

Acute kidney symptoms may differ depending on the cause and severity. Some people may have no symptoms.

However, acute kidney symptoms may include the following:

  • Decreased urine volume
  • Swelling around the eyes
  • Swelling in the ankles and soles of the feet
  • Nauseous
  • Hard to breathe
  • Fatigue
  • ConfusionPain or pressure in the chest
  • Seizures

3. Kidney stones

Kidney stones are hard deposits of minerals or salts that form in the kidneys.

Kidney stones can form in the ureters (the tubes that carry urine from the kidneys) or the bladder (the structure that receives urine from the kidneys through the ureters).

Kidney stones generally occur when there is an excess of mineral salts, such as calcium oxalate, calcium phosphate, or uric acid, in the body.

Symptoms of kidney stones may include the following:

  • Pain in the pelvis, lower abdomen, or groin
  • Blood in the urine (pink, brown, or red urine)
  • Pain or burning when urinating
  • Frequent urination
  • Difficulty urinating
  • The urine is cloudy or foul-smelling.
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fever with chills (if there is an infection)
  • Recurrent urinary tract infections

4. Kidney infection

Kidney infection, or pyelonephritis, is a special type of urinary tract infection that usually occurs in any part of the urinary tract (kidneys, ureters, bladder, or urethra).

Kidney infections occur when an infection from the urethra or bladder spreads to the kidneys.

Less commonly, the infection can spread from other parts of the body to the kidneys through the blood or after kidney surgery.

Symptoms of a kidney infection include the following:

  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Nauseous
  • Vomitting
  • Pain in the pelvis, back, stomach, or groin
  • Increased frequency of urination or urge to urinate
  • Pain or burning when urinating
  • The urine is cloudy or foul-smelling
  • Blood in the urine (pink, brown, or red urine)

5. Kidney cyst

Kidney cysts are fluid-filled sacs or sac-like structures.

This disease is different from a genetic condition called polycystic kidney disease (PKD), which causes the formation of many cysts that damage the kidneys.

The exact cause of simple kidney cysts is not yet known.

This disease may be acquired when injury or damage to the kidney causes fluid to accumulate in a small area so that a cyst forms.

Kidney cysts may not cause any symptoms until they rupture, bleed, or enlarge and begin to press on surrounding structures, such as nerves.

Symptoms of kidney cysts that may appear include:

  • Pain in the pelvis, back, or stomach
  • Increased frequency of urination
  • Blood in the urine (pink, brown, or red urine)

6. Kidney cancer

Kidney cancer occurs when cells in the kidney grow out of control.

The most common type of kidney cancer is called renal cell carcinoma.

Other types of kidney cancer include transitional cell carcinoma, Wilms' tumor (nephroblastoma), and renal sarcoma.

Although the exact cause of kidney cancer is unknown, certain factors can increase the risk, such as smoking, family history of kidney cancer, obesity, and high blood pressure.

Kidney cancer generally does not cause any symptoms until it is at an advanced stage.

Possible symptoms of kidney cancer may include the following:

  • Blood in the urine
  • Pain in the pelvis, back, or abdomen
  • Lumps or swelling in the pelvis
  • Unexplained weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Pale appearance
  • Loss of appetite

Without proper treatment, various types of kidney disease can occur. above can get worse and cause organ function to stop working. This is a serious condition and can be life-threatening.

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