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Kidneys are responsible for the removal of waste and unwanted particles from the bloodstream. They are part of the urinary tract and are responsible for the formation and excretion of urine. It is the filtration and waste disposal system of the body. And as such plays a pivotal part in our health and well-being.
A kidney infection, more often than not, starts with a bladder infection and then spreads to the kidneys. It is caused by the presence of bacteria, specifically a bacteria called E.Coli. Though extremely rare, it is possible to get a kidney infection through your skin. It might make its way into your blood and then travel to the kidneys. You might contract an infection after surgery but that is extremely uncommon as well.
A kidney infection is diagnosed by running a urine test to check it for the presence of bacteria, blood or pus. Other tests may include a CT scan, an ultrasound or a kind of X-ray called voiding cystourethrogram, which involves injecting a contrast dye to image the bladder while urinating.
- Antibiotics: The first lines of treatment for a kidney infection are antibiotics. Depending upon the bacteria that has been found in your urine tests and your personal health, your physician will prescribe you specific drugs. The symptoms usually abate after a few days of treatment, or you might need to continue the antibiotics for a week or so more. It is advisable to continue with the entire course of the drugs even if you feel better after only a few days. Another sample of your urine will be tested afterwards to ensure that the infection has cleared up.
- Hospitalization: For a severe case of kidney infection a physician will insist on hospitalization. The treatment will include antibiotics and a copious amount of fluids that will administered to you intravenously. The severity of the infection would dictate the length of the course of drugs required.
- Surgery: Kidney infections can be symptomatic of a much more serious underlying medical condition. Kidney infections may recur with increasing frequency due to a structural defect of the urinary tract. A nephrologist or a urinary surgeon (urologist) should be consulted for an evaluation. You will most likely need surgery to repair the structural abnormality to ensure that the infections desist.
Kidneys are vital organs that perform important functions of waste removal, and maintain the balance of the body’s fluids. Infections should thus be diagnosed and treated promptly.
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Kidneys are a pair of organs that are located on either side of the spine, each about a size of a fist. The kidneys help in purifying blood by removing toxins, waste materials and excess fluids from the human body. Disorders and dysfunctions of the kidney can lead to severe and often fatal consequences. When the kidneys stop functioning as they are supposed to, dialysis is performed to resume normal functioning in the body.
Dialysis is a type of treatment, which filters and purifies the blood with the aid of a machine. It is an artificial way of purifying blood. There are two types of dialysis, namely hemodialysis and peritoneal dialysis. Hemodialysis, the most common form of dialysis, which involves using a manmade kidney called a hemodialyzer, which removes toxins and waste materials from blood.
Peritoneal Dialysis, on the other hand, is a type of treatment which involves implanting a catheter in the stomach. During the procedure, a fluid called dialysate flows into the abdomen that absorbs all the waste material, which is consequently drained out of the body.
You may need a dialysis if:
- Your kidneys are dysfunctional
- When waste materials and toxins start to accumulate in the body
- In an event of an injury or accident to the kidney such as internal lacerations (wound caused by the tearing of a tissue)
- If the creatinine (a type of a chemical waste product) level falls to 10-12 cc/minute
- In an event where the kidneys aren't able to work properly leading to accumulation of toxins, irregular amounts of chemicals in the body and other dysfunctions
Weakening of the abdominal muscles and weight gain are some of the risks involved in dialysis. Dialysis is a temporary treatment and serves to function till the time the actual kidneys get repaired. In chronic cases of kidney disease, kidney transplant may perhaps be the last resort.