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Nephropathy: Treatment, Procedure, Cost and Side Effects

Last Updated: Nov 01, 2019

What is Nephropathy?

Nephropathy is also called as renal insufficiency, polycystic kidney disease ,Bright’s disease uropathy ,polyuria renal disorder . Nephropathy means kidney disease or damage. Diabetic nephropathy is damage to your kidneys caused by diabetes. In severe cases it can lead to kidney failure. But not everyone with diabetes has kidney damage.The first step in treating diabetic nephropathy is treating your diabetes and, if needed, high blood pressure (hypertension). With good management of your blood sugar and hypertension, you can prevent or delay kidney dysfunction and other complications.Medications,In the early stages of the disease, your treatment plan may include various medications, such as those that help:Control high blood pressure. Medications called angiotensin-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors and angiotensin II receptor blockers (ARBs) are used to treat high blood pressure.

Using both of these is not advised because of increased side effects. Studies support the goal of a blood pressure reading of 140/90 millimeters of mercury (mm Hg) or less.Manage high blood sugar. Several medications have been shown to help control high blood sugar in people with diabetic nephropathy. Studies support the goal of an average hemoglobin A1C (HbA1C) of less than 7 percent.Lower high cholesterol. Cholesterol-lowering drugs called statins are used to treat high cholesterol and reduce protein in the urine.Foster bone health. Medications that help manage your calcium phosphate balance are important in maintaining healthy bones.Control protein in urine. Medications can often reduce the level of the protein albumin in the urine and improve kidney function.Your doctor may recommend follow-up testing at regular intervals to see whether your kidney disease remains stable or progresses

How is the treatment done?

The main treatment is medicine to lower your blood pressure and prevent or slow the damage to your kidneys. These medicines include:Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors, also called ACE inhibitors.Angiotensin II receptor blockers, also called ARBs.As damage to the kidneys gets worse, your blood pressure rises. Your cholesterol and triglyceride levels rise too. You may need to take more than one medicine to treat these complications.And there are other steps you can take. For example:Keep your blood sugar levels within your target range. This can help slow the damage to the small blood vessels in the kidneys.Work with your doctor to keep your blood pressure under control. Your doctor will give you a goal for your blood pressure. Your goal will be based on your health and your age. An example of a goal is to keep your blood pressure below 140/90.

Keep your heart healthy by eating healthy foods and exercising regularly. Preventing heart disease is important, because people with diabetes are more likely to have heart and blood vessel diseases. And people with kidney disease are at an even higher risk for heart disease.Watch how much protein you eat. Eating too much is hard on your kidneys. If diabetes has affected your kidneys, limiting how much protein you eat may help you preserve kidney function. Talk to your doctor or dietitian about how much protein is best for you.Watch how much salt you eat. Eating less salt helps keep high blood pressure from getting worse.Don't smoke or use other tobacco products.

Who is eligible for the treatment?

There are no symptoms in the early stages. So it's important to have regular urine tests to find kidney damage early. Sometimes early kidney damage can be reversed.As your kidneys are less able to do their job, you may notice swelling in your body, most often in your feet and legs.The problem is diagnosed using simple tests that check for a protein called albumin in the urine. Urine doesn't usually contain protein. But in the early stages of kidney damage-before you have any symptoms-some protein may be found in your urine, because your kidneys aren't able to filter it out the way they should.Finding kidney damage early can keep it from getting worse. So it's important for people with diabetes to have regular testing, usually every year.

Who is not eligible for the treatment?

In the early stages of diabetic nephropathy, you may not notice any signs or symptoms. In later stages, the signs and symptoms include:Worsening blood pressure control,Protein in the urine,Swelling of feet, ankles, hands or eyes,Increased need to urinate,Less need for insulin or diabetes medicine,Confusion or difficulty concentrating,Loss of appetite,Nausea and vomiting,Persistent itching,Fatigue.Those who do not face such problems are not prone to Nephropathy.

Are there any side effects?

Complications of diabetic nephropathy may develop gradually over months or years. They may include:Fluid retention, which could lead to swelling in your arms and legs, high blood pressure, or fluid in your lungs (pulmonary edema) A sudden rise in potassium levels in your blood (hyperkalemia)Heart and blood vessel disease (cardiovascular disease), possibly leading to stroke,Damage to the blood vessels of the retina (diabetic retinopathy),Anemia, Foot sores, erectile dysfunction, diarrhea and other problems related to damaged nerves and blood vessels,Pregnancy complications that carry risks for the mother and the developing fetus ,Irreversible damage to your kidneys (end-stage kidney disease), eventually requiring either dialysis or a kidney transplant for survival

What are the post-treatment guidelines?

Lifestyle behaviors can support your treatment goals. Depending on your situation, kidney function and overall health, these actions may include:Being active most days of the week. With your doctor's advice, aim for at least 30 minutes of physical activity most days of the week.Adjusting your diet. Talk with a dietitian about limiting intake of sodium, choosing lower potassium foods and limiting the amount of protein you eat.Quitting smoking. If you're a smoker, talk with your doctor about strategies for quitting smoking.Maintaining a healthy weight. If you need to lose weight, talk with your doctor about strategies for weight loss. Often this involves increasing daily physical activity and reducing calories.Taking a daily aspirin. Talk with your doctor about whether a daily low-dose aspirin is right for yo Maintain a healthy weight. If you're at a healthy weight, work to maintain it by being physically active most days of the week.

If you need to lose weight, talk with your doctor about strategies for weight loss. Often this involves increasing daily physical activity and reducing calories. If you're a smoker, talk to your doctor about strategies for quitting smoking. Support groups, counselling and medications can all help you to stop.To reduce your risk of developing diabetic kidney disease:Treat your diabetes. With effective treatment of diabetes, you may prevent or delay diabetic kidney disease.Manage high blood pressure or other medical conditions.

How long does it take to recover?

No specific information is available.


What is the price of the treatment in India?

No specific information is available.

Are the results of the treatment permanent?

No specific information is available.


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Written ByDr. A.A Khan M.B.B.S,C.C.A,D.C.A,AASECT,FPA,AAD,M.I.M.SGeneral Physician
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Reviewed ByDr. Bhupindera Jaswant SinghMD - Consultant PhysicianGeneral Physician
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