Kidney failure or renal failure is a condition that occurs when kidney function drops below 15 percent of normal capacity. Kidneys are vital organs whose functions include removing waste and toxins, maintaining electrolyte and fluid balance, regulating blood pressure and supporting red blood cell production.
Kidney failure is the end stage of renal disease or ESRD. This is a condition which may develop due to poorly managed high blood pressure and diabetes. Other conditions that may lead to kidney failure include genetic factors, overuse of some medications such as pain killers, and drugs like heroine.
Some forms of kidney failure can be reversed if treatment begins early enough. However, most cases of kidney failure require life-long dialysis or kidney transplant. But, what should you watch out for to better your chances of stopping the disease from worsening? Here are the top 10 signs of kidney failure:
Kidney Failure Sign #1: Swollen Hands or Feet
Swelling in the hands or feet is one of the first signs of kidney failure. Besides keeping blood free from waste toxins, the kidneys also maintain the right amount of fluids in the body. To do this, they excrete excess fluid as part of urine.
If kidneys fail to work at their optimal capacity, toxins and excess fluid start to build up within the bloodstream, collecting in the upper and lower limbs. If this goes on without treatment, the swelling can spread to other parts of the body leading to a swollen appearance in the face and elsewhere. To prevent the condition from worsening, consult a doctor if you notice swelling in your feet, ankles or hands.