Many Virginians know nothing about kidney disease—until it's too late
"Unlike many diseases, kidney disease often has no symptoms until it is very advanced," says Wallace S. Green Sr., Founder of Health & Awareness, eight years dialysis patient, and a two-time kidney recipient.
For more than 30 years I had this progressive disease and was unaware of the increasing damage it was causing. Your health provider can order a simple test to check your kidneys - glomerular filtration rate (GFR) this show how well your kidneys are working. (It is recommended to request the actual GFR numbers between 120 and 15). The GFR normally give is <60 is a normal range and 60> may mean you have kidney disease is what’s given to patients most often. Without the actual GFR number between 120 and 15, It’s you are not a part of your treatment plan, you are unable to identify your kidney function trend.
Sure, doctors ask if we have questions – most patients find it difficult to ask the right questions about something they are not knowledgeable about? Choose a doctor that treats you like a patient and not a collage colleague! Kidney disease can be treated very effectively if it is caught in the early stages. Dietitians and Nutrition are very important parts if they have knowledge of all your medical issues and trained in the chronic disease field you require eating limitations.
“There is no such thing as one size fits all in medical treatment.”
For this reason and others, it is crucial for people to not only become aware of the risk but also comply and take part in health care provider's treatment plan and self-management in known risk factors since kidney disease also makes them a risk for heart disease and stroke higher.
If you answer yes to any of the following questions you are at risk and you should get a kidney screening, learn the meaning of your lab code and what causes your results to raise or lower (food, medication, lack of exercise, lifestyle, etc.). Testing is even more important for the African Americans population that are at higher risk for kidney disease.
Do you have diabetes, high blood pressure, a family history of kidney disease, obesity, gout?
If one or both kidneys fail completely and the damage can't be reversed, the condition is called kidney failure or end-stage renal disease (ESRD). When this occurs, your kidneys can no longer filter wastes well enough to keep you healthy. The symptoms for ESRD include fatigue, weakness, nausea, vomiting, and itching.
Many researchers are studying kidney disease. They are looking for cures, ways to improve diagnosis, make treatments more effective, and make dialysis and transplantation work better. The good news is that kidney disease can be treated very effectively, Health & Awareness is working hard to bring awareness and raise chronic kidney disease prevention in while kidney disease is in the early stages until research find a cure!
WallACE S. Green Sr.
Keep Your Kidneys Healthy
The steps you take to keep your kidneys healthy help the rest of your body too. Talk to your healthcare provider to find out the steps that are right for you.
If you are at risk for kidney disease, the most important steps you can take to keep your kidneys healthy are:
Take an active step in your health care - self-manage
Get your blood and urine checked for kidney disease.
Learn how to read and understand each of your lab results
Manage your diabetes, high blood pressure, and heart disease.
Tips to help keep your kidneys healthy:
When you see your provider, ask:
What is my GFR?
What is my urine albumin result?
What is my blood pressure?
What is my blood glucose (for people with diabetes)?
Bring questions and a list of your medication to your next medical visit.