A passage from what Kidney Disease is – Why me? - Chronic Kidney Disease Prevention. Why are so many people on dialysis - Speak Up! Sandra Green #KidneyWhyMe#mykidneysmatter#tidewaterdrink2015 Feb 08 2017 I learned I had kidney disease long before the symptoms of kidney disease showed up, like more of the patient I with kidney failure, it was not until I lost most of your kidney function that I notice the symptoms. Most were so gradually I did not notice I was experiencing fatigue, itching, swelling, appetite loss, food tasted different and change in urine pattern. Actually, I did not get the entire symptoms at the same time but each came little by little and unnoticeable. My nephrologist, my mention of the protein in my urine but being that jock that I was I thought if I was losing protein, I should eat more; cause protein overload. One thing I share with others when sharing my experience is listening to your body. Your body sends message to you and with affects you, I may never experience, “Take an active role in your health care” Knowing your body is considered the best indication of realizing something has changed. When you visit your nephrologists they measure your kidney function based on a formula that includes age, gender, body size, race and serum creatinine level. Creatinine is a waste product of muscle activity. Our bodies use protein to build muscles and repair themselves. This used protein becomes an amino acid which enters the blood and ends up in the liver where it is once again changed. This time it’s changed into urea which goes through the kidneys into the urine. When the blood levels of creatinine rise, you know your kidneys are slowing down. During my research, I discovered that a non-CKD patient’s blood is cleaned about 35 times a day. A CKD patient’s blood is cleaned progressively fewer times a day depending upon the stage of the patient’s disease. Creatinine is a substance constantly secreted by muscles, and its presence in the blood shows better than anything how well the kidney is doing. If the creatinine is low, 0.5 to 1.5, the kidney is doing well; if it is high, the kidney is in trouble. A mature man’s can be between 0.6 to 1.2, and a mature woman’s between 0.5 and 1.0. It can be even lower for children and, as you age, it lowers even more. The more websites I visited, the more variation I noticed in acceptable ranges including the CKD creatinine levels for Afro-Americans. It’s all in the numbers, I highly recommend everyone to know your Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR). GFR let you know how well your kidneys are filtering out waste products. Once diagnosed, you’ve got to continue monitoring the progress of this disease. Take a blood test and give a random urine sample (kidney screening) once a year and six months later, another blood test accompanied by a 24 hour urine test and give another random urine sample. Other than that, at this early stage, I strongly recommend seeing a dietician, watch your weight, exercising daily, if you are a smoker – stop, monitor your diabetes and blood pressure. It is very important that you work with your health care providers and nephrologists’ team, this mean complying with medical orders, being honest and giving accurate information to your health care providers. Learn to read and understand you lab results, if your doctors tells you a result is okay, always compare it to the last result and remember take an active role in your health care. I often tell people "you can do better if you know better." That sentiment, is what drove my husband, WallACE Green and his friend the late Willie Wilson, including me to create Health & Awareness. The Health & Awareness team passionately believes it is important we make the public aware of kidney disease, including many children who may be at risk of kidney disease at an early age. During the time he spent on dialysis from 2006 until June 2015 he wanted to do all he could to ensure others delay or avoid kidney failure. Health & Awareness is working hard to improve the quality of life for everyone, concentrating on those with an income disadvantage. Fundraising has been use to keep the program going because most people make their donations to the research and cure organization. WallACE believe research is good but prevention is better. More than money we need the support to get this critical information out to individuals in the community, starting with the churches which has been a real disappointment so far. Our main focus is to bring awareness through education starting with preventive behaviors, awareness about risk factors. We do this because we realize you can live with kidney disease if you know better. Its time we all take an active role in our health care, working with the health care providers and don't let the doctors live our life for us. So, in our 5th campaign year, through education and awareness let's join together, encourage each other to make the right decisions regarding our health and build future healthier generations! Act Early to Prevent it!