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Chronic Kidney Disease

Also called: CKD

Summary

You have two kidneys, each about the size of your fist. Their main job is to filter wastes and excess water out of your blood to make urine. They also keep the body's chemical balance, help control blood pressure, and make hormones.

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) means that your kidneys are damaged and can't filter blood as they should. This damage can cause wastes to build up in your body. It can also cause other problems that can harm your health. Diabetes and high blood pressure are the most common causes of CKD.

The kidney damage occurs slowly over many years. Many people don't have any symptoms until their kidney disease is very advanced. Blood and urine tests are the only way to know if you have kidney disease.

Treatment may include medicines to lower blood pressure, control blood glucose, and lower blood cholesterol. CKD can get worse over time. CKD may lead to kidney failure. The only treatment options for kidney failure are dialysis or a kidney transplantation.

You can take steps to keep your kidneys healthier longer:

  • Choose foods with less salt (sodium)
  • Keep your blood pressure below 130/80
  • Keep your blood glucose in the target range, if you have diabetes

NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

Start Here

  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • (American Academy of Family Physicians) Also in
  • (American Kidney Fund) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program)

Diagnosis and Tests

Prevention and Risk Factors

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program)

Treatments and Therapies

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program)
  • (National Kidney Foundation) Also in

Living With

  • (National Kidney Foundation) - PDF
  • (National Kidney Foundation) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF Also in
  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse)
  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF Also in
  • (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)
  • (Life Options Rehabilitation Program)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF
  • (National Kidney Foundation) Also in
  • (National Kidney Foundation)

Related Issues

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF
  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • (National Kidney Foundation) - PDF
  • (National Kidney Foundation) - PDF
  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program)

Genetics

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Library of Medicine)

Health Check Tools

  • (National Kidney Foundation)

Videos and Tutorials

  • (Life Options Rehabilitation Program)

Statistics and Research

  • (National Center for Health Statistics)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)

Clinical Trials

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institutes of Health)

Journal Articles References and abstracts from MEDLINE/PubMed (National Library of Medicine)

Reference Desk

  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases) Also in
  • (Nemours Foundation) Also in

Find an Expert

  • From the National Institutes of Health
  • From the National Institutes of Health

Children

  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • (Nemours Foundation)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases)
  • (National Kidney Foundation)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse)
  • (Nemours Foundation)

Teenagers

  • (Nemours Foundation)

Women

  • (National Kidney Foundation)

Patient Handouts

  • ACE inhibitors (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
  • Chronic kidney disease (Medical Encyclopedia) Also in Spanish
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF
  • (American Kidney Fund)
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF Also in
  • From the National Institutes of Health (National Kidney Disease Education Program) - PDF
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