HomeEditor PicksWhat Does A Kidney Do For Your Body

What Does A Kidney Do For Your Body

Ways To Keep Your Kidneys Healthy

How do your kidneys work? – Emma Bryce

Overview

Your kidneys are fist-sized organs located at the bottom of your rib cage, on both sides of your spine. They perform several functions.

Most importantly, they filter waste products, excess water, and other impurities from your blood. These waste products are stored in your bladder and later expelled through urine.

In addition, your kidneys regulate pH, salt, and potassium levels in your body. They also produce hormones that regulate blood pressure and control the production of red blood cells.

Your kidneys are also responsible for activating a form of vitamin D that helps your body absorb calcium for building bones and regulating muscle function.

Maintaining kidney health is important to your overall health and general well-being. By keeping your kidneys healthy, your body will filter and expel waste properly and produce hormones to help your body function properly.

Here are some tips to help keep your kidneys healthy.

Why Is Dialysis Used

Properly functioning kidneys prevent extra water, waste, and other impurities from accumulating in your body. They also help control blood pressure and regulate the levels of chemical elements in the blood. These elements may include sodium and potassium. Your kidneys even activate a form of vitamin D that improves the absorption of calcium.

When your kidneys cant perform these functions due to disease or injury, dialysis can help keep the body running as normally as possible. Without dialysis, salts and other waste products will accumulate in the blood, poison the body, and damage other organs.

However, dialysis isnt a cure for kidney disease or other problems affecting the kidneys. Different treatments may be needed to address those concerns.

There are three different types of dialysis.

Who Is More Likely To Develop Ckd

You are at risk for kidney disease if you have

  • Diabetes. Diabetes is the leading cause of CKD. High blood glucose, also called blood sugar, from diabetes can damage the blood vessels in your kidneys. Almost 1 in 3 people with diabetes has CKD.1
  • High blood pressure. High blood pressure is the second leading cause of CKD. Like high blood glucose, high blood pressure also can damage the blood vessels in your kidneys. Almost 1 in 5 adults with high blood pressure has CKD.1
  • Heart disease. Research shows a link between kidney disease and heart disease. People with heart disease are at higher risk for kidney disease, and people with kidney disease are at higher risk for heart disease. Researchers are working to better understand the relationship between kidney disease and heart disease.
  • Family history of kidney failure. If your mother, father, sister, or brother has kidney failure, you are at risk for CKD. Kidney disease tends to run in families. If you have kidney disease, encourage family members to get tested. Use tips from the family health reunion guide and speak with your family during special gatherings.

Your chances of having kidney disease increase with age.1 The longer you have had diabetes, high blood pressure, or heart disease, the more likely that you will have kidney disease.

If you are at risk for kidney disease, learn ways to prevent kidney disease.

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How Long Do Hemodialysis Treatments Last

The time needed for your dialysis depends on:

  • how well your kidneys work
  • how much fluid weight you gain between treatments
  • how much waste you have in your body
  • how big you are
  • the type of artificial kidney used

Usually, each hemodialysis treatment lasts about four hours and is done three times per week.

A type of hemodialysis called high-flux dialysis may take less time. You can speak to your doctor to see if this is an appropriate treatment for you.

Where Are The Kidneys And How Do They Function

Kidney 101

There are two kidneys, each about the size of a fist, located on either side of the spine at the lowest level of the rib cage. Each kidney contains up to a million functioning units called nephrons. A nephron consists of a filtering unit of tiny blood vessels called a glomerulus attached to a tubule. When blood enters the glomerulus, it is filtered and the remaining fluid then passes along the tubule. In the tubule, chemicals and water are either added to or removed from this filtered fluid according to the body’s needs, the final product being the urine we excrete.

The kidneys perform their life-sustaining job of filtering and returning to the bloodstream about 200 quarts of fluid every 24 hours. About two quarts are removed from the body in the form of urine, and about 198 quarts are recovered. The urine we excrete has been stored in the bladder for anywhere from 1 to 8 hours.

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What Do Your Kidneys Do

27 August, 2020

The kidney is a complex organ thats responsible for eliminating waste substances from your body through urine. Normally, people have two kidneys, which are located in the back of the abdomen, next to the spine, and under the ribs.

The kidneys have a bean shape. Theyre essential organs as life isnt possible without them functioning correctly. However, thanks to technological advances, there are techniques such as dialysis or transplants that allow doctors to replace them.

In addition to urine production, the kidneys participate in many other processes, such as regulating blood pressure. Therefore, in this article, well explain what kidneys do, their anatomy, and their main characteristics.

Kidneys Are Sensitive To Their Environment

Humans are a complex and integrated creation and the kidneys work with the rest of your organs to help you live a healthy life. Unfortunately, when one organ or system fails to work properly, others can begin to fail as a result.

Whether they begin the process of failure, or are responding to other organ failures, when the kidneys falter, many life-altering issues can result.

Like any intricate machine, the kidney is highly sensitive to its environment. Every time our heart beats, the kidneys get about 20 percent of the blood that is pumped. If the kidneys do not receive enough blood, they will start to deteriorate.

Many acute illnesses, which are illnesses or medical conditions with severe or sudden onset, can cause blood flow to fall. So its very common to have acute kidney injury whenever we get acutely ill.

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What Is Peritoneal Dialysis And How Does It Work

In this type of dialysis, your blood is cleaned inside your body. The doctor will do surgery to place a plastic tube called a catheter into your abdomen to make an access. During the treatment, your abdominal area is slowly filled with dialysate through the catheter. The blood stays in the arteries and veins that line your peritoneal cavity. Extra fluid and waste products are drawn out of your blood and into the dialysate. There are two major kinds of peritoneal dialysis.

What Does Potassium Do For Your Body A Detailed Review

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The importance of potassium is highly underestimated.

This mineral is classified as an electrolyte because its highly reactive in water. When dissolved in water, it produces positively charged ions.

This special property allows it to conduct electricity, which is important for many processes throughout the body.

Interestingly, a potassium-rich diet is linked to many powerful health benefits. It may help reduce blood pressure and water retention, protect against stroke and help prevent osteoporosis and kidney stones (

This article provides a detailed review of potassium and what it does for your health.

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The Tubule Returns Needed Substances To Your Blood And Removes Wastes

A blood vessel runs alongside the tubule. As the filtered fluid moves along the tubule, the blood vessel reabsorbs almost all of the water, along with minerals and nutrients your body needs. The tubule helps remove excess acid from the blood. The remaining fluid and wastes in the tubule become urine.

Why Kidney Health Is Vital To Your Overall Well

In ancient times the kidneys were viewed as the seat of feelings, conscience, and yearnings and the source of morality and ethical activity. The kidneys were associated with the innermost parts of a persons personality and well-being. While we know now that kidneys have no direct role in shaping our ethics, emotions and personality, these two bean-shaped organs are nonetheless vital to our well-being.

The kidney is a remarkably intricate organ that acts as the filter system of the body. Just as important, your kidneys also work to keep the whole body in a state of chemical balance. The kidneys regulate the substances, helpful and harmful, that float around in the body and keeps them within very tight parameters so the body can function as a well-oiled machine. This is called renal function.

You cannot live without proper renal function, even if the kidneys are assisted artificially. Life would not continue without the many functions these organs perform.

The kidney is the major player in the regulation of your blood pressure, and the make-up of the blood. Maintaining many hormones that are vital to our very existence, the kidneys even produce hormones that tell bones when to make more blood cells.

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How Does Blood Flow Through My Kidneys

Blood flows into your kidney through the renalartery. This large blood vessel branches into smaller and smaller blood vessels until the blood reaches the nephrons. In the nephron, your blood is filtered by the tiny blood vessels of the glomeruli and then flows out of your kidney through the renal vein.

Your blood circulates through your kidneys many times a day. In a single day, your kidneys filter about 150 quarts of blood. Most of the water and other substances that filter through your glomeruli are returned to your blood by the tubules. Only 1 to 2 quarts become urine.

If Your Kidneys Are In Danger Your Body Will Give You These 8 Signs

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When your kidneys are in danger, your body gives you signs of it. You need to recognize them immediately and do something!

These vital organs have their location just below the ribs. They are responsible for cleansing and detoxifying, that is, filtering about 200 liters of blood every day. This is essential for all body functions and for maintaining healthy blood always. The kidneys are responsible for excessive fluid or waste material from the body. They regulate electrolyte levels, keep bones healthy and strong, make more red blood cells and stabilize blood pressure.

If the kidneys are in trouble and do not function as usual, general health will have a big problem. Read the following article carefully to recognize and prevent problems related to kidney damage or failure. You will see when your kidneys are in danger and you will save yourself from further trouble.

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How Long Can You Live On Dialysis

If your kidneys have failed, you will need to have dialysis treatments for your whole life unless you are able to get a kidney transplant. Life expectancy on dialysis can vary depending on your other medical conditions and how well you follow your treatment plan. Average life expectancy on dialysis is 5-10 years, however, many patients have lived well on dialysis for 20 or even 30 years. Talk to your healthcare team about how to take care of yourself and stay healthy on dialysis.

Risks Associated With Hemodialysis

If you continue to have these symptoms while on dialysis, tell the healthcare provider performing the treatment.

Those who undergo long-term dialysis treatments are also at risk of developing other medical conditions, including amyloidosis. This disease can occur when amyloid proteins produced in bone marrow build up in organs such as the kidneys, liver, and heart. This usually causes joint pain, stiffness, and swelling.

Some people may also develop depression after receiving a diagnosis of long-term kidney failure. If youre having thoughts associated with depression, such as thoughts of harming yourself or committing suicide, call 911 or your local emergency services. The National Alliance on Mental Illness can also provide you with resources if youre dealing with depression and a chronic condition.

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Be Aware Of The Amount Of Otc Pills You Take

If you regularly take over-the-counter pain medication, you may be causing kidney damage. Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs , including ibuprofen and naproxen, can damage your kidneys if you take them regularly for chronic pain, headaches, or arthritis.

People with no kidney issues who take the medicine occasionally are likely in the clear. However, if you use these medicines daily, you could be risking your kidneys health. Talk with your doctor about kidney-safe treatments if youre coping with pain.

If youre at high risk of kidney damage or kidney disease, its a good idea to have regular kidney function tests. The following people may benefit from regular screening:

  • people who are over 60 years old
  • people who were born at a low birth weight
  • people who have cardiovascular disease or have family with it
  • people who have or have a family history of high blood pressure
  • people who are obese
  • people who believe they may have kidney damage

A regular kidney function test is a great way to know your kidneys health and to check for possible changes. Getting ahead of any damage can help slow or prevent future damage.

What Are Some Of The Causes Of Chronic Kidney Disease

What are kidneys and how do they work?

Chronic kidney disease is defined as having some type of kidney abnormality, or “marker”, such as protein in the urine and having decreased kidney function for three months or longer.

There are many causes of chronic kidney disease. The kidneys may be affected by diseases such as diabetes and high blood pressure. Some kidney conditions are inherited .

Others are congenital that is, individuals may be born with an abnormality that can affect their kidneys. The following are some of the most common types and causes of kidney damage.

Diabetes is a disease in which your body does not make enough insulin or cannot use normal amounts of insulin properly. This results in a high blood sugar level, which can cause problems in many parts of your body. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney disease.

High blood pressure is another common cause of kidney disease and other complications such as heart attacks and strokes. High blood pressure occurs when the force of blood against your artery walls increases. When high blood pressure is controlled, the risk of complications such as chronic kidney disease is decreased.

Glomerulonephritis is a disease that causes inflammation of the kidney’s tiny filtering units called the glomeruli. Glomerulonephritis may happen suddenly, for example, after a strep throat, and the individual may get well again.However, the disease may develop slowly over several years and it may cause progressive loss of kidney function.

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How The Kidneys Work

Kidneys are a pair of organs shaped like kidney beans. In children, theyre each about the size of the childs fist.

The most important job of the kidneys is to filter liquid waste from the blood and get rid of it in the form of urine. Kidneys are part of the bodys urinary system.

Each kidney contains millions of tiny structures called nephrons. The nephrons act as filters and work continuously to perform several important functions in the body:

  • Filtering waste from the body

    The kidneys produce urine to carry the liquid waste and extra fluid they have filtered out of your childs body. The urine travels from the kidneys through tubes called ureters to your childs bladder, where urine is stored. When your child goes to the bathroom, urine passes out through the urethra.

  • Maintaining chemical and fluid balance

    The kidneys help balance the chemicals in your childs blood, such as sodium, potassium and calcium, by controlling the volume of fluid in the body.

    Proper balance is necessary for other systems in the body to work well. An imbalance may affect various organ systems.

Early Ckd May Not Have Any Symptoms

You may wonder how you can have CKD and feel fine. Our kidneys have a greater capacity to do their job than is needed to keep us healthy. For example, you can donate one kidney and remain healthy. You can also have kidney damage without any symptoms because, despite the damage, your kidneys are still doing enough work to keep you feeling well. For many people, the only way to know if you have kidney disease is to get your kidneys checked with blood and urine tests.

As kidney disease gets worse, a person may have swelling, called edema. Edema happens when the kidneys cant get rid of extra fluid and salt. Edema can occur in the legs, feet, or ankles, and less often in the hands or face.

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What Are The Symptoms Of Kidney Failure

In early stages of kidney disease, many people experience few or no symptoms. Its important to note that chronic kidney disease can still cause damage even though you feel fine.

Chronic kidney disease and kidney failure can cause different symptoms for different people. If your kidneys arent working properly, you may notice one or more of the following signs:

  • Fatigue
  • Poor appetite or metallic taste of food

Drink Plenty Of Fluids

Kidney Function Test

Theres no magic behind the cliché advice to drink eight glasses of water a day, but its a good goal precisely because it encourages you to stay hydrated. Regular, consistent water intake is healthy for your kidneys.

Water helps clear sodium and toxins from your kidneys. It also lowers your risk of chronic kidney disease.

Aim for at least 1.5 to 2 liters in a day. Exactly how much water you need depends largely on your health and lifestyle. Factors like climate, exercise, gender, overall health, and whether or not youre pregnant or breastfeeding are important to consider when planning your daily water intake.

People who have previously had kidney stones should drink a bit more water to help prevent stone deposits in the future.

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