According to the National Kidney Foundation, more than 20 million Americans have undetected moderate chronic kidney disease. Twenty million others are at risk, but fortunately, most kidney disease can be prevented. However, it is important to know what to look for so you can get diagnosed or treated if you are at risk.
Diabetes and high blood pressure are two of the most common causes of kidney diseases. Other causes include connective tissue disorders like lupus erythematosus, untreated urinary tract infections, and streptococcus infections. Kidney cancer and other causes are much less common.
Kidneys, located near the middle of our backs, are essential for filtering waste from our bodies. Proper kidney function is essential to our health. If the kidneys do not process and remove waste from our bloodstream, these waste products will build up and cause damage. High blood pressure and diabetes, being two main causes for kidney diseases, must be properly managed. To do this can save your kidneys--and your life.
Those who have advanced kidney diseases often need dialysis or kidney transplants in order to live. Fortunately, with proper care, many cases of kidney disease can be prevented so that it does not advance to this stage. Even if you do not currently have diabetes, hypertension, or kidney disease, having your blood pressure and urine checked regularly is key to preventing disease. This way, you will be aware of any changes in your body that could lead to kidney disease.