Friday, March 1, 2024
HomeFactsHow Does Diabetes Affect The Kidneys

How Does Diabetes Affect The Kidneys

The Effects Of Kidney Disease

How can Diabetes affect your Kidneys?

Over time, high blood sugar levels can damage tiny blood vessels in your kidneys, which means they cannot filter your blood properly.

As a result, tiny particles of protein spill into the urine this is called microalbuminuria. As kidney disease progresses, larger amounts of protein spill into the urine this condition is called proteinuria.

As kidney disease progresses, waste products start to build up in your blood because your body can’t get rid of them. If left untreated, your kidneys will eventually fail and dialysis or a kidney transplant will be required.

Diabetes can also affect the nerves that tell you when your bladder is full. The pressure from a full bladder can damage the kidneys. If urine remains in the bladder for a long time, it can increase your risk of developing a urinary tract infection, which can spread to the bladder.

What If I Miss A Dose

If you miss a dose of Entresto, be sure to take it as soon as you remember. If the timing is too close to your next dose, just take your next scheduled dose. Be sure not to take more than one dose at a time. Taking multiple doses may increase your risk for more side effects. You should speak with your doctor about any missed doses, if youre concerned.

To help make sure that you dont miss a dose, try setting a reminder on your phone. A medication timer may be useful, too.

How Can I Prevent It

Diabetic kidney disease can be prevented by keeping blood glucose in your target range. Research has shown that tight blood glucose control reduces the risk of microalbuminuria by one third. In people who already had microalbuminuria, the risk of progressing to macroalbuminuria was cut in half. Other studies have suggested that tight control can reverse microalbuminuria.

Don’t Miss: Does Metformin Cause Kidney Damage

What Increases The Risk Of Developing Diabetic Kidney Disease

All people with diabetes have a risk of developing diabetic kidney disease. However, a large research trial showed that there are certain factors that increase the risk of developing this condition. These are:

  • A poor control of your blood sugar levels.
  • The length of time you have had diabetes.
  • The more overweight you become.
  • Having high blood pressure. The higher your blood pressure, the greater your risk.
  • If you are male.

This means that having a good control of your blood glucose level, keeping your weight in check and treating high blood pressure will reduce your risk of developing diabetic kidney disease.

If you have early diabetic kidney disease , the risk that the disease will become worse is increased with:

  • The poorer the control of blood sugar levels. The greater your HbA1c level, the greater your risk.
  • Having high blood pressure. The higher your blood pressure, the greater your risk.

How Diabetes Affects Your Heart And Kidneys

Colgate Virology (and Immunology) Blog: Moving Towards a Cure ...

Heres the connection between type 2 diabetes, heart health and kidney disease.

Diabetes, specifically type 2 diabetes, increases your risk of developing heart and kidney disease. Why does this happen? Because diabetes increases the level of glucose in your bloodstream . If not well-controlled, high blood sugar can damage blood vessels.

  • Kidneys: Your kidneys filter waste and extra fluid from your blood through a series of small blood vessels. High blood sugar can damage these blood vessels. Over time, this can stop your kidneys from filtering blood as well as they should, leading to chronic kidney disease. About 1 in 3 adults with diabetes has kidney disease.
  • Heart: High blood sugar can damage the blood vessels that supply oxygen to your heart and brain. This can cause them to get narrow or clogged, which can lead to a heart attack or stroke. If you have diabetes, youre twice as likely to have heart disease as someone who doesnt have diabetes, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . Additionally, when your kidneys dont work well, it can put extra stress on your heart, leading to the development of heart disease and/or high blood pressure. Heart disease is very common in people with chronic kidney disease.

If you have diabetes, kidney disease and/or heart disease, here are some tips to stay healthier:

Read Also: How To Repair Kidneys And Liver

Low Blood Sugar And Chronic Kidney Disease

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for medical advice or diagnosis from a physician.

The most common cause of kidney disease is diabetes. The bodies of people with diabetes do not use the hormone insulin properly or does not make insulin at all, so insulin injections or other diabetes medications are required. Because insulin helps keep the amount of sugar in the blood at a normal level, people with diabetes are at risk for both low blood sugar and high blood sugar , especially when there are changes in diet, activity or medications. Blood sugar below 70 mg/dL is considered low.

Kidney disease and the risk for low blood sugar

The greatest risk of low blood sugar occurs in someone who has both chronic kidney disease and diabetes. Whether or not someone has diabetes, a person with CKD is at risk for low blood sugar because of changes in appetite and meal routine. When kidney function declines insulin and other diabetes medications remain in the system longer because of decreased kidney clearance. For a person with diabetes, insulin and other diabetes medications that lower blood sugar may require an adjustment to prevent low blood sugar.

Causes of low blood sugar

Common causes of low blood sugar include:

People with chronic kidney disease sometimes experience a loss of appetite that can lead to skipping meals or not eating enough. This often causes a drop in blood sugar.

Symptoms of low blood sugar

How Does Diabetes Affect Kidney Function

One out of every ten diabetic patients suffers from kidney problems. Kidneys are relatively more prone to damage when a person has diabetes. For all diabetics, it is really important to understand the effect of diabetes on kidney function. It is hard to imagine a day when the kidneys do not function as they should. It is even worse in the life of a diabetic. Let us start by understanding how the kidney works?

Read Also: Is Jamaica Good For Your Kidneys

How Do I Know If I Have Kidney Damage

Most people with early kidney damage do not have symptoms. The best way to find early kidney damage is to have a urine test once a year. This test checks for very small amounts of protein in the urine called albuminuria. It helps show kidney damage at an early stage in people with diabetes. Not everyone with kidney disease gets kidney failure. With the right treatment, you can prevent kidney disease from getting worse.

Symptoms Of Kidney Failure

How can Diabetes affect your Kidneys? | National Kidney Foundation

For people with diabetes, kidney problems are usually picked up during a check-up by their doctor. Occasionally, a person can have type 2 diabetes without knowing it. This means their unchecked high blood sugar levels may be slowly damaging their kidneys. At first, the only sign is high protein levels in the urine, but this has no symptoms. It may be years before the kidneys are damaged severely enough to cause symptoms. Some of the symptoms may include:

  • Fluid retention

Also Check: How Do You Know If Your Kidney Stone Is Passing

Where Can I Get More Information

The National Kidney Foundation has free booklets that provide more information about diabetes and kidney disease. Call the national toll-free number 855.653.2273 and ask for free booklets. You can see these and other titles at

If you would like more information, please contact us.

Save this content:

Causes Of Diabetic Nephropathy

Some of the main causes of diabetic nephropathy are:

  • Racism: People of African-American descent are more likely to suffer from diabetic nephropathy. This risk is due in part to high rates of diabetes and high blood pressure in these communities.
  • Heavy body weight: Having a higher BMI can also be a big cause of Diabetic nephropathy. This comes along with other diseases, like obesity, hypertension, cardiovascular problems, etc.
  • Hereditary: If a person is having a family history of kidney-related diseases, then he has a higher chance of inheriting diabetic nephropathy.
  • Early occurrence: Developing diabetes before the age of 20 can also make you inherit diabetic nephropathy faster as compared to others.

These are a few causes of the serious disease of diabetic nephropathy. Once you inherit the disease due to any of the above causes, the foremost thing you look for is the treatment.

Don’t Miss: Will Drinking Cranberry Juice Help My Kidneys

Develop Or Maintain Healthy Lifestyle Habits

Healthy lifestyle habits can help you reach your blood sugar and pressure goals. Adopt the following measures mentioned below to help you keep your kidneys healthy.

  • Ask a dietitian to curate a diabetes meal plan for you
  • Limit salt and sodium
  • Make physical activity part of your routine
  • Get enough sleep

Dietary And Lifestyle Changes

Can Diabetes Damage Your Kidneys

Diabetes is either a consequence of or symptomatic of obesity. Thankfully weight reduction is one option that drastically changes your health for good if you have diabetes. With the right dietary restrictions and workout regime, you can take little steps towards damage control. If you are confused about your dietary plans, then you must consider taking help from a dietician. He will get you a perfect diet chart keeping your medical history and body requirements in mind.

Read Also: How To Improve Kidney Function Numbers

How Can You Tell If You Have Diabetic Kidney Disease

Most people with diabetic kidney disease generally do not notice any signs. The only way to know if you have diabetic kidney disease is to get it diagnosed with the help of blood and urine tests.

Healthcare professionals use blood and urine blood tests to check for diabetic kidney disease. The healthcare professional will check for albumin in the urine and the blood to see how well the kidneys are filtering the blood.

What Can Be Done About Diabetic Neuropathy

Diabetic nephropathy can mainly be identified by tests such as:

Urine tests – measure protein levels. An abnormal level of protein in the urine is an important indicator of diabetic nephropathy.

Blood pressure – Regular check-ups are necessary for high blood pressure, as an increase in blood pressure is triggered by diabetic nephropathy, which can spontaneously subside as it progresses.

Kidney Function Test – Check the kidney function notch.

Biopsy – With the help of a thin needle, a small section of tissue is taken from the kidney and examined in the laboratory. A biopsy is typically indicated if kidney damage and its possible etiology are suspected.

Kidney ultrasound – The kidneys are tested for signs and symptoms of impaired kidney function.

There is no cure for diabetic nephropathy. It is also important to know that these different types of treatments, used recklessly, can be more antagonistic as there is the possibility of possible kidney weakening which then leads to kidney failure.

Because of this,

  • Prevention is the most helpful therapy method with proper control of blood sugar levels and blood pressure.
  • Dialysis or unnatural kidney treatment

This is usually done to prevent patients from reaching end-stage kidney failure, which is defined as the inability of the kidney to function at all.

  • Kidney transplant

Image courtesy:

“Hemodialysis Scheme” from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases – via Commons Wikimedia

Don’t Miss: Are Beets Good For Your Kidneys

Can I Get More Help To Manage My Diabetes

Yes, a diabetes educator can teach you how to control your blood sugar. Your doctor can help you find a diabetes educator in your area. To find a diabetes education program in your area, you can use the American Association of Diabetes Educators online locator. Medicare and many private insurance plans will help pay for visits with a diabetes educator.

How Will I Know If I Have Diabetes

How Does Diabetes Affect The Kidneys ? – TeluguOne

If your doctor suspects you may have diabetes, they will do a blood test called hemoglobin A1C to check your blood sugar levels. This test tells your doctor how your blood sugar levels have been over the last two or three months. You have diabetes if you have a result of 6.5% or higher on two A1C tests.

Don’t Miss: What Is Good For Kidneys

Prevention & Treatment Of Kidney Disease

Kidney disease is closely linked to high blood sugar, high blood pressure and smoking. The best way to prevent or delay kidney damage is to:

  • keep your blood sugar and blood pressure at target
  • take your medications as prescribed
  • have your blood cholesterol checked annually and keep it at target
  • follow a healthy meal plan
  • exercise regularly
  • talk to your doctor about getting screened

If you’ve already been diagnosed with kidney damage or kidney disease, you may need to limit certain foods to prevent waste products building up in your body. Your health-care team may suggest you limit protein foods or foods high in potassium, phosphate or sodium. Controlling your blood pressure is also very important. You should see a registered dietitian for diet advice that is right for you.

In advanced or “end-stage” kidney disease, dialysis may be needed to do the job of the kidneys.

Who Is Affected By Diabetes

Diabetes is a very common condition. Approximately 151 million people around the world have diabetes. Experts think that this number may double within five years. When not properly managed, diabetes is a serious threat to a patients vision, heart, and kidneys. However, with medicine and lifestyle changes, diabetics can lead normal, healthy lives.

Don’t Miss: Can Kidney Stones Cause Diarrhea

How Does Diabetes Cause Damage To My Kidneys

Diabetes can harm the kidneys by causing damage to:

  • Blood vessels inside your kidneys. The filtering units of the kidney are filled with tiny blood vessels. Over time, high sugar levels in the blood can cause these vessels to become narrow and clogged. Without enough blood, the kidneys become damaged and albumin passes through these filters and ends up in the urine where it should not be.
  • Nerves in your body. Diabetes can also cause damage to the nerves in your body. Nerves carry messages between your brain and all other parts of your body, including your bladder. They let your brain know when your bladder is full. But if the nerves of the bladder are damaged, you may not be able to feel when your bladder is full. The pressure from a full bladder can damage your kidneys.
  • Urinary tract. If urine stays in your bladder for a long time, you may get a urinary tract infection. This is because of bacteria. Bacteria are tiny organisms like germs that can cause disease. They grow rapidly in urine with a high sugar level. Most often these infections affect the bladder, but they can sometimes spread to the kidneys.

How Does Diabetes Cause Kidney Disease

Can Diabetes Damage Your Kidneys

High blood glucose, also called blood sugar, can damage the blood vessels in your kidneys. When the blood vessels are damaged, they dont work as well. Many people with diabetes also develop high blood pressure, which can also damage your kidneys. Learn more about high blood pressure and kidney disease.

You May Like: When To Go To The Hospital For Kidney Infection

Testing For Kidney Disease

Signs of kidney disease are not always noticed by those who have them. Routine screening for people at risk for kidney disease is important because early detection and treatment of kidney disease may slow its progression to kidney failure.

It is important for people with diabetes to have annual testing for kidney disease. This involves:

1. Urine testing to detect very small amounts of albumin. Albumin is a type of protein. Having a small amount of albumin in the urine is called microalbuminuria. This is a sign that the kidney’s filtering units have been damaged. This test is especially important if you are at increased risk for CKD because of diabetes, high blood pressure or a family history of these conditions.

2. GFR is the best measure of kidney function. GFR estimates your kidney’s filtering ability using the result of a simple blood test for a waste product called creatinine, and other factors like age, gender, and race. GFR is used to determine the stage of kidney disease, and treatment is based on the stage of kidney disease.

If you have diabetes, ask your health care professional to evaluate you for CKD. For more information, contact the National Kidney Foundation at 800.622.9010 or visit

COVID-19 patients can become kidney patients.

You can provide lifesaving support today with a special monthly gift.

What Are The Symptoms Of Diabetic Kidney Disease

You are unlikely to have symptoms with early diabetic kidney disease for example, if you just have microalbuminuria . Symptoms tend to develop when the kidney disease progresses. The symptoms at first tend to be vague and nonspecific, such as feeling tired, having less energy than usual and just not feeling well. With more severe kidney disease, symptoms that may develop include:

  • Difficulty thinking clearly.
  • Needing to pass urine more often than usual.
  • Being pale due to anaemia.

As the kidney function declines, various other problems may develop for example, anaemia and an imbalance of calcium, phosphate and other chemicals in the bloodstream. These can cause various symptoms, such as tiredness due to anaemia, and bone thinning or fractures due to calcium and phosphate imbalance. End-stage kidney failure is eventually fatal unless treated.

Recommended Reading: What Size Are Kidney Stones

How Can I Reduce My Risk Of Kidney Disease

There are lots of things you can do to reduce your risk of developing kidney disease:

  • Keep your blood sugar levels within your target range
  • Get support to stop smoking
  • Eat healthily and keep active
  • Go to all your medical appointments.

We have lots of information and support to help you have you tried our Learning Zone? Thousands of people with diabetes are using it to help them manage their diabetes. You can also download a copy of our ‘Diabetes and kidney disease’ leaflet free of charge from our online shop.


Most Popular