Medical File: Your Kidneys

Medical File: Your Kidneys
04 March 2019
If you’ve ever wondered just how important your kidneys are, imagine them as your body’s greatest filter, flushing your body of waste and toxins. In honour of World Kidney Day, let’s look at just how well they do their all-important job.

What Do They Do?

Your kidneys perform truly incredible feats of filtering, every day. Removing waste, controlling your body’s balance of fluids, and making sure you have enough electrolytes, your kidneys are one of your body’s most important organs. As your body’s primary filtering mechanism, your kidneys filter your blood, separating out the waste and returning the filtered blood to the rest of your body. But yes, it’s true: you can live a healthy and long life, even if you only have one kidney.

How Do I Know If Something’s Wrong?

When something goes wrong with your kidney functioning, you’ll know pretty soon. You may experience pain, difficulty with urination, changes in urination, or similar symptoms. Kidney infections and kidney stones can be managed and treated by your family doctor, if caught early enough. More serious complications, like renal failure, kidney damage, kidney disease, and kidney cancer, does require emergency medical attention. If you’re experiencing back pain, or pain along your sides, it may be your kidneys giving you some trouble. Don’t delay in seeking medical attention. 

How Do I Keep My Kidneys Healthy?

Staying physically active, and keeping tabs on your diet to ensure you’re eating well, are two ways you can support and sustain your kidneys’ all-important function. Having your blood sugar and glucose levels monitored when necessary, and ensuring that you are drinking enough liquids every day, is imperative for good kidney health. If you have been diagnosed with hypertension, it’s vital that you work with your doctor to monitor your kidney function.

Can I Live With Just One Kidney?

If you need to have a kidney transplant, you can obtain a kidney from a living, or recently deceased, owner. If, however, you have two fully functioning kidneys and are asked to donate one, you can live a happy, healthy, and long life, with just one kidney. Kidneys aren’t just great at their jobs - they volunteer to do the job of the other kidney if one can’t quite keep up, or you donate it to someone in need of a transplant.

LifeDoc Can Help

If you’re concerned about your kidney function levels, or want to learn more about how to better support and sustain your kidneys, chat to your doctor. Make that appointment, and take your notes using LifeDoc, to help you remember all the important elements of your new kidney-friendly approach. LifeDoc ™ can help. LifeDoc ™ helps you take charge of your personal health information, remember medical appointments, and securely stores your personal medical history. Stay up to date with LifeDoc™ on Facebook and Twitter.