Kidney Pain

Learn about kidney pain.

Diabetic nephropathy

Diabetic nephropathy is a form of kidney disease. It is progressive in nature. One of its characteristic traits is nephrotic syndrome, in which the patient's kidneys are damaged and leaks significant levels of protein out of the blood to the urine.

Symptoms

There are many symptoms and medical signs that can appear in a case of diabetic nephropathy. However, typically, the condition does not present symptoms in its early stages (it is asymptomatic). Later in the course of the disease, symptoms may develop. One possibility is nausea and vomiting. Another potential appearance is swelling, which frequently appears in the area around the person's eyes, and shows up in the mornings. However, the swelling can eventually reach other areas throughout the body, like the legs.

Weight gain may occur. This is due to the build up of fluid in the patient. Itching may be felt in general, at various locations on the body. A sense of fatigue may be felt by the patient. Headaches may occur. The person may also have high blood pressure. Stiffening of the renal artery can also take place.

Causes

As can be understood by its name, this condition is related to diabetes. It is actually brought on by long-term cases of diabetes mellitus, both types 1 and 2. If the patient does not control blood sugar levels well, then the risk of developing diabetic nephropathy is higher. Additionally, high cholesterol is noted as being associated with greater incidence of this disease.


Treatment

Methods used to treat this condition are aimed at slowing the damage to the kidneys, as well as keeping complications under control. Medications are the main method of treating diabetic nephropathy. Keeping blood sugar levels under control is employed. Changes in diet may be used. If high blood pressure exists, then it is often treated. Dialysis is required when end-stage kidney disease is present. There are also other treatment options; discuss with a professional and get your prescribed treatment from such a source rather than from this page, which is not qualified in nature.

Complications

As previously brought up, there are various complications that can be related to this condition. One is low blood sugar, or hypoglycemia. This can occur since the excretion of insulin by the kidneys is worsened. A high level of potassium in the blood, known as hyperkalemia, can also take place. Some infections may occur more frequently, such as those of the urinary tract. Other potential complications also exist.