When Should You See A Renal Dietitian
Like nephrologists, a renal dietitian is a specialist in renal nutrition. These professionals should be part of your healthcare team. They can help you with the nutritional aspect of kidney disease. They diagnose and assess the nutritional problems that may arise from CKD.
Renal dietitians create specific individualized meal plans to improve their kidney health.
They also help improve nutrition status to
- Individualized meal plans that improve nutritional status
- Reduced acid production
- Eat without restrictions
They will educate you on how to preserve kidney function and stop CKD from moving into stage five.
You can find a skilled renal RD through your health insurance provider. You can also find one in the National Kidney Foundations dietitian directory.
If you are not living in the states you can check out these international dietetic associations to find renal RDs in countries around the world.
When Should You See A Kidney Doctor
A kidney doctor is known as a nephrologist. These healthcare professionals are experts in renal health. They provide medical advice as well as diagnose, treat and manage kidney problems and CKD.
A nephrologist is often referred by your primary medical doctor when your labs indicate kidney health may be compromised.
People who do not have kidney issues should see a kidney specialist when they have the following signs and symptoms:
- Get a lot of urinary tract infections
- Recurring kidney stones
- An inherited condition that leads to kidney disease
- A lot of blood in the urine
- A lot of protein in the urine
- Recurring kidney stones
People in stage 4 CKD are typically seeing this doctor at least every three months. They will monitor labs and manage any underlying conditions you may also have.
If you have not yet seen a kidney doctor your primary doctor and/or insurance company can refer you to a local nephrologist.
The Stages Of Kidney Disease
Chronic kidney disease has five stages. In the earliest stages, your kidneys are damaged and not working at their full capacity. Once you reach stage three, youâve lost half of your kidney function.â
At this point, you may begin to experience other health problems as a result of kidney failure. Treating other health conditions is important in slowing down the loss of your kidney function at this stage.â
Once you reach stage four, your kidneys are severely damaged. Your doctor may implement a strict treatment plan to keep the function that is left in your kidneys. Once you reach stage five, your kidneys are failing. You need dialysis or a kidney transplant to live.
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Renal Multivitamin For Kidney Nutrition
Stage 4 kidney disease requires certain nutrients that may not be able to be acquired from diet alone especially when your diet has restrictions that may result in nutrient deficiencies. The nutrients levels needed during CKD are different from healthy individuals so you may need a special renal multivitamin
A renal MV is a kidney-safe vitamin that does not contain the large toxic doses often found in regular over-the-counter MV. They include the following nutrients:
Most renal multivitamins do not contain large amounts of vitamins A, E, and K. This is done to avoid toxicity from excess vitamin intake. Avoiding these vitamins is recommended unless your doctor prescribes them for you.
Some renal MV recommendations include Renavite and ProRenal +D and omega-3s. This MV gives enough nutrition without the extra nutrients that are hard on the kidneys like vitamin A.
Ask your healthcare team what is the best renal multivitamin for you.
When Should I See My Doctor
If you notice any of the symptoms above, see your doctor. If you have one or more of the risk factors for kidney disease, it is particularly important to look after your kidney health and get your kidney function checked every 1 to 2 years.
The body can cope with the kidneys not working properly for quite a while. People can lose 90% of their kidney function before they experience any symptoms. This makes it particularly important to take notice of any symptoms that do appear, and seek medical advice.
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When And What To Discuss With Doctor About Stage 4 Ckd
Having a close relationship with your doctor is vital for optimal kidney disease treatment. You should disclose any problems and concerns that you may be having as well as symptoms that develop. This is important as your doctor will be able to pick out and investigate potential problems before they become any more serious.
For the sake of convenience, you may discuss with your doctor your dialysis options and whether you can perform dialysis from the comfort of your own home. Speaking directly to a nephrologist will also provide more insight into your condition.
Those with stage 4 kidney disease are expected to visit their doctor at least every three months, getting a full workup and making sure the treatment plan is working well.
Kidney Failure Life Expectancy
Its not possible to know exactly how long a person with kidney failure will live. Every person with kidney failure is different.
In general, the National Kidney Foundation says that a person on dialysis can expect to live for an average of 5 to 10 years as long as they follow their treatment. Some people live for more than 20 or 30 years.
Factors that can play a role in life expectancy include your:
- stage of kidney disease
- other coexisting conditions
Once you reach end stage kidney failure, you will need dialysis or a kidney transplant to live. Missing even one dialysis treatment can decrease your life expectancy.
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How Can I Live Well With Kidney Failure
Doing well with kidney failure is a challenge. You will feel better if you
- stick to your treatment schedule
- review your medicines with your health care provider at every visit and take your medicines as prescribed
- work with a dietitian to develop an eating plan that includes foods you enjoy eating while also helping your health
- stay activetake a walk or do some other physical activity that you enjoy
- stay in touch with your friends and family
Treatment with dialysis or transplant will help you feel better and live longer. Your health care team will work with you to create a treatment plan to address any health problems you have. Your treatment will include steps you can take to maintain your quality of life and activity level.
Your eating plan plays an important role. When you have kidney failure, what you eat and drink may help you maintain a healthy balance of salts, minerals, and fluids in your body.
Control Other Health Problems
You may have other disorders, such as diabetes and high blood pressure, which can damage your kidneys. One of the goals of your treatment is to make sure these are well-controlled. Ask your healthcare professional what you can do to keep these conditions under control – and do it! Some of the things your healthcare professional may ask you to do:
- Take medications called angiotensin converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers as part of your therapy. Studies have shown that these medications help to protect your kidney function. You may also need other blood pressure medications to control your blood pressure.
- Lose weight if you are overweight
- Cut down on salt in your diet to control blood pressure
- If you have diabetes, monitor your blood sugar, follow your diet and take your medications as prescribed
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Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 4
26 Jun 2022
- Written by Dr. Patricia Shelton on June 27, 2022
Patients with chronic kidney disease experience a slow decline in kidney function. This reduces the kidneys ability to clear waste products from the blood, which can result in a variety of symptoms and serious health complications. The disease progresses through five stages, with stage 4 being an advanced stage.
Treating Chronic Kidney Disease
There is no cure for chronic kidney disease, although treatment can slow or halt the progression of the disease and can prevent other serious conditions developing.
People with CKD are known to have an increased risk of a heart attack because of changes that occur to the circulation.
In a minority of people, CKD may cause kidney failure, also known as established renal failure or end-stage kidney disease. In this situation, the usual functions of the kidney stop working.
To survive, people with ERF may need to have artificial kidney treatment, called dialysis, or a kidney transplant.
Read more about living with chronic kidney disease
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Can I Be Active With Kidney Failure
Yes. Physical activity is an important part of staying healthy when you have kidney failure. Being active makes your muscles, bones, and heart stronger. Physical activity also makes your blood travel through your body faster so your body gets more oxygen. Your body needs oxygen to use the energy from food.
You may find that physical activity can also improve your mood and make you feel better.
Talk with your doctor before you start a new exercise routine. Start slowly, with easier activities such as walking at a normal pace or gardening. Work up to harder activities such as walking briskly. Aim to be active on as many days as possible.
What Does Stage 4 Kidney Disease Mean
The stages of kidney disease are defined by the eGFR. This is a measurement of how well the kidneys are cleaning the blood, and is determined by measuring the levels of a waste product called creatinine in the blood. A formula is used to calculate the eGFR from the measured level of creatinine.
In people with stage 4 kidney disease, the eGFR is 15 to 29. By comparison, the normal eGFR is 90 or above. Stage 2 kidney disease involves an eGFR of 60 to 89, while in stage 3, the eGFR is 30 to 59.
There are five stages of chronic kidney disease, with increasing numbers indicating greater severity. Stage 5 represents kidney failure, and stage 4 kidney disease is the last stage before kidney failure.
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Stage 4 Kidney Disease: The Ultimate Guide
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When kidney damage goes unmanaged it can progress into chronic kidney disease. This condition has 5 stages. All phases of this condition affect the kidneys, however, it is during chronic kidney disease stage 4 that the kidneys become severely impaired. While this is a serious issue there are still things you can do to preserve kidney function. This article is your guide to stage 4 kidney disease. Read on to learn what is stage 4 kidney disease, how to know you have it, how to treat it, and what can be done to prevent it from leading to kidney failure.
Do What You Can To Manage The Complications Of Kidney Disease
Kidney disease can cause other health problems throughout your body including:
- Heart and blood vessel problems
- Mineral and bone problems
- High blood pressure
- Poor nutritional health
If you have stage 4 kidney disease, you are probably experiencing some of these problems already. Your healthcare professional will work with you to develop a treatment plan to help manage these problems and keep them from getting worse. Treatment may include diet, exercise, and medications. It is very important that you follow your treatment plan because it can greatly improve your quality of life and how long you live. It can also help to slow or even stop kidney disease from getting worse – and it may even stop or delay kidney failure.
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About Chronic Kidney Disease
Chronic kidney disease is a long-term condition where the kidneys do not work effectively.
CKD does not usually cause symptoms until it reaches an advanced stage. It is usually detected at earlier stages by blood and urine tests. Main symptoms of advanced kidney disease include:
- swollen ankles, feet or hands
- shortness of breath
Read more about the symptoms of chronic kidney disease
Chronic kidney disease is most frequently diagnosed through blood and urine tests.
If you are at a high risk of developing CKD, you may be screened annually. Screening may be recommended if you have:
Read more about diagnosing chronic kidney disease
How To Reverse Stage 4 Kidney Disease
There is no known way to reverse damage to the kidney. Once kidney disease has progressed to stage 4, its generally not possible to heal the damage and regain normal kidney function.
However, it is possible to reduce the chances that stage 4 kidney disease will progress to stage 5, where a person needs dialysis. The best way to do this is by addressing the cause of the chronic kidney disease. The most common causes are diabetes and high blood pressure. Keeping both your blood sugar and your blood pressure under control can help to prevent further damage to your kidneys and progression of your kidney disease from stage 4 to stage 5. This may involve taking medications regularly, along with lifestyle changes.
Regular use of certain painkillers, such as ibuprofen, can lead to kidney disease and even kidney failure. If you have kidney disease at any stage, avoid using ibuprofen in order to protect your kidneys from further damage.
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Slowing And Treating Kidney Disease Progression
Medications that can help people with kidney disease, though there is no cure. Certain blood pressure drugs, including ACE inhibitors and ARBs, may slow disease progression and delay kidney failure, even in people without high blood pressure.
If you do have high blood pressure, its important to control it because it can damage the blood vessels in the kidneys, worsening CKD. Your doctor can prescribe blood pressure medicine and may recommend reducing the salt in your diet.
Many cases of kidney disease are linked to diabetes, so controlling your blood sugar is vital, with medication if necessary. Take care to monitor your blood sugar levels regularly and try to stay at a healthy weight.
When there is kidney damage, phosphorus can build up in the body and weaken bones. Talk with your doctor about avoiding foods high in phosphorus, such as dairy products, processed meats, beer, soda, and chocolate.
Potassium is another mineral that can build up in the body when you have kidney disease. Too much potassium increases the risk of a heart attack. Ask your doctor about avoiding foods that are high in potassium, such as bananas and broccoli.
What Is The Prognosis For People With Kidney Failure
The prognosis for stage 4 kidney failure varies widely depending on a number of factors. These may include the underlying cause of the condition, how well the condition is managed, and any complication factors, such as diabetes.
The stage of the condition at diagnosis also plays a role. In general, it is easier to slow or stop the progression of kidney failure during the earlier stages of the disease. There is no cure for this condition, but healthy lifestyle changes and treatments during stage 1 or stage 2 can make a significant difference in outlook.
For these reasons, it is important to speak with a doctor as soon as possible if you notice any symptoms of kidney disease.
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How Many Years You Can Live With Stage 4 Kidney Disease
There is no exact answer or formula that can accurately predict the prognosis and outcome for stage 4 kidney disease. Also, more than one factor can affect life expectancy.
Again thestage is important variable to determine the outlook and prognosis of thedisease, but it is not everything. Each case is unique, not just in terms ofpersonality but also in terms of other factors such as genetics, gender,current health status, and so forth.
In otherwords, its hard to definitely find out how many years you will survive at thisstage 4. But if youre keen to explore this issue, statistical analysis mayhelp .
Onestatistical review with abridged lifetable method suggests that life expectancy statistics for stage 4 kidneydisease are as follows :
The chart suggests that a reduction in life expectancy is consistently associated with an increase in age. This applies for both men and women.
Genderhas an effect. Life expectancy of people with stage 4 kidney disease is a bit different between men and women . At age40 years for example, women had life expectancy for about 9.1 years and 10.4years for men.
Interestingly,the study found that the gap of life expectancy by gender increases clearly forall ages and all stages in which it wasrelatively longer in women than men.
Accordingto this study, women and men participants aged 40 years got:
What Causes Stage 4 Kidney Disease
There are many different potential causes of chronic kidney disease. The most common causes are diabetes and high blood pressure. When these two conditions are not controlled, they cause damage to the tiny blood vessels inside the kidney. Over time, this damage begins to add up, leading to a loss of kidney function. In a patient with stage 4 kidney disease, its likely that blood sugar and/or blood pressure has been poorly controlled for years. If a patient has reached the 4th stage, kidney disease has likely been present for a long period of time, even if the patient didnt realize it.
There are also other potential causes, including heavy alcohol use and smoking. Severe or frequent kidney infections or kidney stones can also cause damage to the kidney and lead to kidney disease.
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