Category Archives: Kidney Failure

My son has kidney failure since age 27. He received the gift of life of a kidney transplant two months after starting dialysis. The transplant lasted 3 years and had to be removed as it became infected. He has been on dialysis for the past 5 years and has a difficult time finding a match as he is highly sensitized because of his previous transplant and he had two blood transfusions. His doctor now says he needs a parathyroid surgery due to chronic depression of calcium levels. He is extremely anemia and has terrible pain in his feet that he is unable to walk. My question is whether the surgery will help with anemic and foot pain. No one knows why he developed kidney failure as no one in our family has kidney disease. Blood type O+. Thank you for your assistance.

Parathyroid surgery for dialysis patients has been reported to improve anemia and pain in the extremities (peripheral neuropathy).  It is impossible to anticipate if the surgery will help each and every dialysis patient.  I am unable to provide a prognosis … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Blood/Urine Testing For Kidney Disease, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Symptoms and Side Effects, Transplantation

Hi. Are there any complications associated with hemodialysis and very HIGH platelet count due to past splenectomy?

Platelets are used in the blood clotting systems in your body and having a high platelet count could cause problems for blood clotting in the dialysis tubing or dialysis filter.  Your nurse or dialysis technician should be taking notice of … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing, Symptoms and Side Effects, Treatments

Hi, I had reconstructed kidney surgery about 12 years ago. Now I’m in late stage 4 CKD and the kidney I had surgery on is now dead. I’m having a hard time finding my records from the Hospital. Do you know where I can go to get them? Now that my left kidney died did the adrenal gland die with it? I’m having a lot of fatigue, and just down right have no energy. I got my fistula created last week. That was just a FYI.

Disease of the adrenal gland and disease of the kidney are almost always two separate diseases.  I do not know what type of kidney surgery that you had, but sometimes the adrenal gland of that kidney can be injured or … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Chronic Kidney Disease, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing

Hello Doctor, My husband had a liver transplant 5 years ago. He is not in Stage 5 CDK, due to the anti-rejection drugs. He is relatively healthy, has high BP, leg swelling, extremely tired and urinates frequently. He is seeing a Kidney Doctor at UCSD and recent blood work showed his GFR is 15-20. My question is what is it that I look for? My husband had a really difficult time with transplant and had to have at least 6 surgeries and he is just downright done with Doctors. My fear is that he will NOT do dialysis or kidney transplant (even if he is a candidate. I would like to give him information so he can think about options. Do you have any information or any kind of books, suggestions?

Your husband should consider all aspects of his care.  The amount of effort that has been put forward to give him a new liver and a new life is extraordinary.  Kidney disease is an unfortunate complication of that process.  I … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Blood/Urine Testing For Kidney Disease, Chronic Kidney Disease, GFR, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing, Transplantation, Treatments

My fiance in the Philippines was diagnosed last month with CKD. He went to another nephrologist for second opinion because he doesn’t want to go through dialysis. Will his body be able to take all the toxins. I don’t know how to convince him to go through dialysis. I still have to petition him so he can come here and have close monitoring treatment. Our son is excited to see him soon and I want him to be alive and well by that time happens.

I am unable to make a specific diagnosis based on the information that you present.  I cannot determine the cause of the chronic kidney disease (CKD) or the proper treatment.  I suggest that your fiancé continue to consult with his … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Blood/Urine Testing For Kidney Disease, Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing, Medication and Kidney Function, Symptoms and Side Effects, Treatments

Doctor, My brother started Dialysis 3 weeks ago. They have told him to keep his liquid intake at 32 oz daily which he has done. But since doing this his legs are swelling up and they are painful to the touch after each treatment. He sweats at work and therefore loses even more fluids. He has been weak and light-headed, has dizzy spells and his heart rate has gone up. To me, he has the symptoms of dehydration. I’ve had it several times, so I know what it feels like. Plus, the only time he gets worse is at dialysis and right after. He has treatments 3 times a week. At first, his sessions were 3 hrs and he was doing better, but recently they have increased them to 4 hours and that’s when all of his symptoms started. During his treatment today his heart rate went so high that they rushed him to the hospital. Can you share your thoughts with me on what could be causing these sudden problems? He is very strict about following his diet, but I think he isn’t drinking enough fluids and with sweating at his job and the treatments it’s dehydrating him even more. Thank you Doctor, I really appreciate your time and anything you can share with me.

If your brother has swelling in his legs, then he has excess fluid in his body.  The goal of dialysis is to remove all of the swelling in his legs and to achieve a normal blood pressure and pulse.  If … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing, Symptoms and Side Effects, Treatments

I am puzzled. I have exhibited symptoms of CKD and those symptoms have remained consistent at 2.0 for about a year now. I am frightened that my CKD may decline in the near future and I am fearful of having, in that event, to drive from my home at Lake Chapala in Mexico to nearby Guadalajara (about one hour each way) for treatment and At 76 years of age, am unwilling to go through that although I am told that death would be the alternative. No one ever elaborates on the potential suffering and declines experienced by those electing to die rather than go through the torture (as I define it) of onerous treatment on a machine several times a week. Tell me, please, keeping in mind that I am in my mid-70s and come from a family where men rarely live to that age, if I refuse treatment, what may I anticipate in terms of declining health and ultimate demise if I refuse treatment. I do not fear your response.

I am not able to provide a prognosis without performing a complete history and physical examination.  You have the right to make decisions about participating in dialysis treatments or merely leading your life as long as you can and as … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Chronic Kidney Disease, Dialysis, End of Life Issues, GFR, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Medication and Kidney Function, Symptoms and Side Effects, Treatments

Hello, I’m a 41 year old woman who has had nephrotic syndrome for the last 3 years and I have just been diagnosed with FSGS as well. My creatinine is 124 and my GFR is 41. I have not responded to prednisone and tacrolimus is not working either. I have been told I’m not a candidate for chemotherapy type drugs as I have a poor response to steroids and have been told I will have renal failure in 2-5 years.

Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis (FSGS) is a very common cause of kidney failure and is very difficult to treat.  Many do not respond to treatments.  Your history is very consistent with the diagnosis of FSGS and you may have to consider … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, FSGS, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Transplantation

I’m writing a non-fiction book,and part of it is about a college student who had been playing college basketball just one year before death. He died a year later in 1972 at age 23, and the official cause of death was Uremia. His obituary said he had been “ill for 6 months before he died” in a New Jersey hospital.It is not known if he used IV drugs, but he did use LSD and unknown green and yellow pills. I assume for him to die, both of his kidneys must have stopped functioning. How could he have died so quickly? Does this mean he died because he refused dialysis? He may have suffered from a mental illness also, possibly Schizophrenia.

I am unable to make a specific diagnosis based on the information that you present.  Kidney disease can be very silent and not apparent until someone is very ill.  It is not uncommon for kidney disease to present at a … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing, Symptoms and Side Effects, Treatments

I keep hearing different things about dialysis. I am stage 5 but still urinate regularly. My biggest symptoms are feeling tired and loss of appetite. My doctors tell me I will live many years and feel great on dialysis but then I have nurses tell me its horrible on the body and after about 5 years your health goes down. What is the truth? If I did dialysis it would be home. I have no other serious health problems (ex. cancer, heart disease, lung disease, etc). I’m trying to get on a transplant list now, but what is the truth about the side effects of dialysis?

Dialysis, especially dialysis done at home, is a way to stay alive and feel well until you get a kidney transplant.  There are many different responses to dialysis, but in general, most folks who start dialysis feel much better and … Continue reading

Posted in Ask the Doctor, Dialysis, Kidney Failure, Kidney-Related Health Questions, Laboratory Testing, Nephrologist, Transplantation