Wednesday, December 7, 2022
HomeEditor PicksWhy Do We Have 2 Kidneys

Why Do We Have 2 Kidneys

What Happens After A Ct Scan

Protect Your Kidneys with this Diet (Whole-Grains are OUT?)

If contrast media was used during your procedure, you may be monitoredfor a period of time for any side effects or reactions to the contrastmedia, such as itching, swelling, rash, or difficulty breathing.

If you notice any pain, redness, and/or swelling at the IV site afteryou return home following your procedure, you should notify your doctoras this could indicate an infection or other type of reaction.

Otherwise, there is no special type of care required after a CT scan ofthe kidney. You may resume your usual diet and activities unless yourdoctor advises you differently.

Your doctor may give you additional or alternate instructions after theprocedure, depending on your particular situation.

What Else Do Kidneys Do

Kidneys are always busy. Besides filtering the blood and balancing fluids every second during the day, the kidneys constantly react to hormones that the brain sends them. Kidneys even make some of their own hormones. For example, the kidneys produce a hormone that tells the body to make red blood cells.

Now you know what the kidneys do and how important they are. Maybe next Valentine’s Day, instead of the same old heart, you can give your parents a special card featuring the kidneys!

Why Do We Have Two Kidneys

Brooke Huuskes – Lecturer in Human Anatomy, Physiology Anatomy & Microbiology, La Trobe University

This piece is part of the The Conversation’s Curious Kids series for children.

Why do we have two kidneys when we can live with only one? Question from the students of Ms Morris Grade 5 class, Ringwood North Primary School, Victoria.

This is a really great question. The answer is scientists are not completely sure but we do have some theories. That is often the case with science.

Most of the animals you see above ground on Earth today, including humans, are the same on both sides. We have two eyes, two ears, and even two nostrils. Scientists gave this a fancy name called bilateral symmetry.

If you look in the mirror and draw an imaginary line down the middle of your reflection you will see that you have an arm and a leg on each side. If you had goggles that let you see your insides, you would see that you also have a kidney and a lung on each side too.

But it wasnt always like this. And some animals still only have one kidney.

Around 500 million years ago, our long-lost relatives that were living in the ocean decided to leave the water to walk and live on land.

This was a very important moment in our history because on land, animals could change to grow a very complicated body with all of the important organs that are inside you, including two kidneys.

Two kidneys better than one?

Growing up with one kidney

Needing an extra kidney

Don’t Miss: Does Red Wine Cause Kidney Stones

Does It Matter If Hla Numbers Are A Good Match Or Not

We prefer a good match, although this is more important for deceased donor kidneys. When a deceased donor kidney becomes available, UK Transplant matches the six numbers that the donor has with the best match for all the potential recipients on the on-call register.One way of thinking of this is that it is very much like the National Lottery. That is, we all have our own six numbers and if the donor had the same six numbers as one of the recipients on the list, they would be offered that kidney.

This is called a 6-antigen match or a full house match. Just like winning the lottery jackpot, this does not happen very often. Five numbers matching is a bit more common, and four numbers matching is a bit more common again. However, we do not like to take less than four numbers matching as far as possible, unless the child has numbers that are extremely uncommon in the population and very unlikely, therefore, to be matched.

If the child is lucky enough to receive a full house 6-antigen matched kidney from a deceased donor, then this is the only match that does as well as a kidney from a parent, even though the parent may only have three numbers in common with their child. This is because the parent may have other things in common that we do not match for or even understand. It is also because the kidney is taken from the parent and very rapidly transferred into the child, with very little wait in between.

For example:

Will I Need To Take Medicines Or Follow A Special Diet

Why do we have 2 Kidneys?

Most likely. Your healthcare team will work with you to develop a treatment plan that’s right for you. Your treatment plan may include taking medicines, restricting salt, limiting certain foods, getting exercise, and more. You will also need treatment for any other health problems you may have, including high blood pressure or diabetes.

Don’t Miss: Is Red Wine Good For Kidney Stones

What Are The Kidneys And What Do They Do

The kidneys are two bean-shaped organs, each about the size of a fist. They are located just below the rib cage, one on each side of the spine. Every day, the two kidneys filter about 120 to 150 quarts of blood to produce about 1 to 2 quarts of urine, composed of wastes and extra fluid. Children produce less urine than adults and the amount produced depends on their age. The kidneys work around the clock a person does not control what they do. Ureters are the thin tubes of muscleone on each side of the bladderthat carry urine from each of the kidneys to the bladder. The bladder stores urine until the person finds an appropriate time and place to urinate. Read more about the urinary tract.

Kidneys work at the microscopic level. The kidney is not one large filter. Each kidney is made up of about a million filtering units called nephrons. Each nephron filters a small amount of blood. The nephron includes a filter, called the glomerulus, and a tubule. The nephrons work through a two-step process. The glomerulus lets fluid and waste products pass through it however, it prevents blood cells and large molecules, mostly proteins, from passing. The filtered fluid then passes through the tubule, which sends needed minerals back to the bloodstream and removes wastes. The final product becomes urine.

What About A Kidney Transplant

According to the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Health, almost 200,000 people in the United States have a functioning transplanted kidney.

A kidney transplant is only done when you have no functioning kidneys. The risks of the procedure and side effects of the medications youll need for the rest of your life outweigh the small increase in function you get from a second kidney.

If your solitary kidney gets injured or sick and stops working, you might be eligible for a transplant.

No matter how many kidneys you started with, you only receive one kidney in a transplant. The transplanted kidney usually gets bigger and works harder over time. Eventually, your transplanted kidney will function almost as well as two kidneys.

Also Check: Can A Kidney Infection Cause Diarrhea

Where Are The Kidneys And How Do They Function

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.

Myth: Drinking 8 Glasses Of Water A Day Helps Flush Out The Toxins In The Kidneys

What do the kidneys do ?

FACT: There is no medical evidence to support this statement. Drinking large amounts of water do not protect from kidney disease. Thirst controls the desire to drink water and should determine the amount of fluid intake. Patients who are undergoing treatment for kidney disease are often advised to drink less salt and fluids as fluid retention can cause shortness of breath, swollen ankles and increase in weight gain.

Also Check: Can Apple Cider Vinegar Affect Your Kidneys

Pros And Cons Of Kidney Transplant

Kidney transplant is a surgical procedure or treatment choice aimed for patients suffering from kidney diseases. A donated kidney will be placed inside the abdomen of the patients and will do the works of the failed kidneys. The kidneys of the patient will not be removed during transplant operation not unless theres a condition that requires it. Facing a kidney transplant is a very serious matter it is an issue of life and death. Thus, people should be aware about the different factors when it comes to kidney transplant especially in terms of its advantages and disadvantages.

Basic Organs Of The Body

It can be tricky to know the inside of your body. Many people dont know where their thymus, or kidneys or lungs are, or what these organs do.

Heart. Your heart is between the two lungs at the front of your chest. The heart muscles pump blood around your body. You know your heart is working because you can feel your heart beat and you can feel the blood at your pulse.

The heart pumps blood containing new oxygen to every part of your body. At the same time, it pumps the old blood without oxygen back through the lungs. This is so it can pick up new oxygen to repeat this cycle.

Lungs. your lungs are sponge-like organs. Every time you breathe they filter oxygen from the air through tiny vessels into the blood. It is then carried to the heart to be pumped round your body. The lungs filter carbon dioxide from your body when you breathe out.

Liver. your liver is the organ below the lungs. It acts like a filter for the blood. Chemicals and impurities, including from drugs and medications, are filtered by the liver. The liver does many other essential jobs. For example, it makes and processes many body fats. The liver is the only internal organ that can regrow.

Kidneys. the kidneys are also filters. Some drugs are filtered more by the kidneys than by the liver. Waste products filtered by the kidneys leave the body as urine.

Bone marrow. Bone marrow is the soft tissue inside bones. Blood cells originally come from bone marrow.

Recommended Reading: Is Grape Juice Good For Kidney Stones

Why Do People Have A Single Kidney

There are three main reasons why a person may have only one kidney:

  • A person may be born with only one kidney. This condition is called renal agenesis. Another condition, which is called kidney dysplasia, causes a person to be born with two kidneys, but only one of them works. Most people who are born without a kidney lead normal, healthy lives.
  • A person may have had one kidney removed during an operation in order to treat an injury or a disease like cancer.
  • A person may have donated one kidney to a person who needed a kidney transplant.

Growing Up With One Kidney

Why do we have two kidneys?, News, La Trobe University

It is true, you can live with only one kidney. Some people are born with only one because the other one did not grow properly. Other times, the two kidneys touch each other when they are first growing and join together, making one kidney shaped like a horseshoe. People with these types of kidneys have to be very careful because they might get sick more easily than someone who has two kidneys.

Recommended Reading: Mayo Clinic Kidney

Keeping Your Kidneys Healthy

Well-functioning kidneys are essential to your overall health. Early detection of kidney disease can be life-saving. Medication and changes to lifestyle, along with an early referral to a kidney specialist, can prevent or delay kidney failure.

If you are at increased risk of chronic kidney disease, talk to your doctor about having a regular kidney health check.

Can You Drink Alcohol With Only One Kidney

Many of your bodys organs are affected by alcohol including your kidneys. Drinking in moderation usually wont harm your kidneys.

Alcohol increases the amount of urine you produce but reduces your kidneys ability to filter blood. This disrupts the fluid and electrolyte balance in your body, and you become dehydrated.

Without enough fluid in your body, the cells in your organs, including your kidneys, cant function properly. Eventually it may cause permanent damage.

Your liver is also important for maintaining fluid and electrolyte balance. Liver damage from excessive alcohol interferes with this balance, making it even harder for your kidneys to work correctly.

The risk of kidney damage is even higher for heavy drinkers who also smoke.

Alcohol has this effect whether you have one or two kidneys, but it may lead to kidney failure more quickly when you only have one functioning kidney.

Read Also: Kidney Pain High Blood Pressure

How Do My Kidneys Work

Each of your kidneys is made up of about a million filtering units called nephrons. Each nephron includes a filter, called the glomerulus, and a tubule. The nephrons work through a two-step process: the glomerulus filters your blood, and the tubule returns needed substances to your blood and removes wastes.

Myth: Kidney Disease Always Leads To Dialysis Or Kidney Transplantation

How do your kidneys work? – Emma Bryce

FACT: Diabetes and hypertension are two common causes of kidney disease. If these are effectively controlled, then kidney disease can be prevented. Apart from this, timely screening and early detection can also play a significant role in prevention of kidney disease, especially the ones in advanced stages. If detected early, the need for dialysis or transplant can be omitted or delayed.

Recommended Reading: Can Seltzer Water Cause Kidney Stones

Eat 1/2 Teaspoon Of Baking Soda Daily And This Happens To Your Kidneys

The kidneys are small, only about the size of a fist, but they perform vital functions that play a role in overall health. Each day, the kidneys filter about 120-150 quarts of blood, to produce 1-2 quarts of urine, filtering waste and extra fluid out of the body. The kidneys prevent the buildup of waste in the body, keep electrolyte levels stable, and make hormones that regulate blood pressure, make blood cells, and maintain strong bones.

Many factors can lead to kidney damage, including type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, a disease called glomerulonephritis, which damages the kidneys filtering units, infections, kidney stones, and overuse of some over-the-counter pain killers. Repairing the kidneys after damage just may lie in a common household item: baking soda.

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.

Recommended Reading: Is Grape Juice Good For Kidney Stones

Special Programs For Living Donor Transplantation

Many patients have relatives or non-relatives who wish to donate a kidney but are not able to because their blood type or tissue type does not match. In such cases, the donor and recipient are said to be “incompatible.”

See also: National Kidney Registry

Live Donor to Deceased Donor Waiting List Exchange

This program is a way for a living donor to benefit a loved one, even if their blood or tissue types do not match. The donor gives a kidney to another patient who has a compatible blood type and is at the top of the kidney waiting list for a “deceased donor” kidney. In exchange, that donor’s relative or friend would move to a higher position on the deceased donor waiting list, a position equal to that of the patient who received the donor’s kidney.

For example, if the donor’s kidney went to the fourth patient on the deceased donor waiting list, the recipient would move to the fourth spot on the list for his or her blood group and would receive kidney offers once at the top of the list.

Paired Exchange Kidney Transplant

This program is another way for a living donor to benefit a loved one even if their blood or tissue types do not match. A “paired exchange” allows patients who have willing but incompatible donors to “exchange” kidneys with one another-the kidneys just go to different recipients than usually expected.

That means that two kidney transplants and two donor surgeries will take place on the same day at the same time.

Blood Type Incompatible Kidney Transplant

Will You Need Dialysis

Curious Kids: why do we have two kidneys when we can live ...

Dialysis performs the function of your kidney by filtering your blood and removing waste and extra fluid. Its only done when youve temporarily or permanently lost most or all of your kidney function.

According to the National Kidney Foundation, dialysis should be started only if your kidneys have lost 85 to 90 percent of their function. Since you usually have nearly normal kidney function when you have one kidney, you wont need dialysis unless your kidney fails.

You should see your healthcare provider at least once a year to evaluate your single kidney. If a problem develops, you should be checked more often.

Two tests are used to evaluate your kidney function:

  • The glomerular filtration rate indicates how well your kidneys are filtering blood. Its calculated using the creatinine level in your blood.
  • The amount of protein in your urine is measured to determine if the filters in your kidney are damaged and leaky. High levels of protein in your urine is a sign of kidney dysfunction.

Your blood pressure also must be measured.

High blood pressure can be a sign of kidney dysfunction. It can also damage the blood vessels in your kidney, which can make kidney dysfunction worse.

Lifestyle changes and medication can lower your blood pressure and avoid further kidney damage.

Read Also: Osteocleanse

RELATED ARTICLES

Most Popular