Acute renal failure, also known as acute kidney failure, is a medical condition wherein your kidney suddenly stops performing its normal function of filtering out waste products. This can lead to the accumulation of a lot of waste causing an imbalance in the blood’s chemical makeup. It is usually seen in people suffering from a critical illness.
Acute renal failure can be fatal if it is not treated at the right time. Owing to advancements in medical science, acute renal failure can be treated. And if you are a person having a healthy lifestyle and are in good health, your recovery can be faster and your kidney can start functioning normally as well.
What are the symptoms of Acute Renal Failure?
Acute Renal Failure shows several symptoms. It is very important to notice these signs and consult doctors at the earliest.
Signs and symptoms of Acute Renal Failure are as follows:
Decreased urine output
Difficulty in breathing
Frequent mood swings
Tiredness or fatigue
Swelling of legs, ankles, or around eyes
Pain in the chest or pressure
Nausea or vomiting over many days
Blood traces in stool
High blood pressure
Hiccups, seizures, or hand tremors. Coma in severe cases
Many times a person experiencing acute renal failure may not show any symptoms. In such cases, it can be detected through diagnosis by medical professionals only.
Why does Acute Renal Failure Occur?
Acute Kidney Failure can occur due to several reasons. It can be occurred due to the following:
Decreased Blood Flow
Some diseases can reduce your blood flow. It is usually the result of partial or complete blockage of the heart’s arteries. Such diseases that can cause sudden failure of kidneys thereby leading to ARF are:
Hypotension i.e low blood pressure
Blood or fluid loss caused by problems such as bleeding, severe diarrhoea
Failure of other organs such as liver, heart, etc.
Excessive use of Non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) that are used to relieve pain
Any major surgery
Direct Damage to the Kidneys
Some diseases or conditions can directly damage your kidneys which can further lead to acute renal failure. These include:
Sepsis is a life-threatening condition that can lead to ARF
Multiple myeloma is a type of cancer that can lead to acute kidney failure
A medical condition called vasculitis causes inflammation and scarring of blood vessels.
Any other medical condition that can directly damage or cause inflammation in the kidney tubules, the small blood vessels in the kidneys, or the filtering units in the kidneys
Blockage of Urinary Tract
Urinary Tract along with kidneys and other organs forms an important part of the excretory system. Thus blockage of the urinary tract can lead to acute renal failure. Some of the conditions due to which blockage can occur are as follows:
Problems in the prostate such as its enlargement
Presence of blood clots in the urinary tract
Types of Acute Renal Failure
Acute Renal Failure can be divided into three types - prerenal, renal, and postrenal. This classification is based upon the causes due to which it occurs in the first place.
Acute Prerenal Failure
It is caused when the blood supply to the kidneys is reduced. It is observed in almost 60 to 70 percent of all ARF cases.
Acute Renal (Intrinsic) Failure
This type of ARF is caused due to direct injury or damage to the kidneys. This may occur due to blood clots, Lupus, drug abuse, etc.
Acute Postrenal Failure
It occurs when there is a blockage in the urinary tract. Postrenal causes account for 5 to 10 percent of all ARF cases.
Risk Factors Involved in Acute Renal Failure
The occurrence of Acute Renal Failure (ARF) is predominantly observed in cases where the person is already having other medical conditions. These conditions tend to increase the risk of experiencing ARF.
Conditions that can increase the risk of ARF are as follows:
Hospitalization for some serious medical conditions that require intensive care
Old age can increase the risk of ARF
Morbid Obesity can cause a lot of stress to the kidneys. This can lead to the development of ARF
Uncontrolled diabetes can damage the blood vessels of the kidneys. Over time this can damage kidneys and lead to their failure.
Presence of coronary artery disease
Some types of cancer and their associated treatment
Diagnosis of Acute Renal Failure
After assessing the signs and symptoms shown by you, your doctor may suggest several tests to confirm the occurrence of Acute Renal Failure. This can be confirmed with the help of a proper diagnosis.
The diagnosis of Acute Renal Failure includes the following tests and procedures:
Measuring Urine Output: In this test, urine output is measured over 24 hours. This helps doctors in assessing the functioning of the kidney.
Testing Urine Sample: Analysis of the urine sample is carried out. This may help doctors in understanding abnormalities that may be present in the excretory system.
Blood Tests: Analysis of blood samples will help in detecting increased levels of urea and creatinine. These are two waste products present in blood and help in assessing the condition of the kidneys.
Imagining Tests: Tests like CT scans or ultrasonography tests will help to understand if there’s a blockage in your urine flow or if your kidneys are enlarged.
Testing of Kidney Tissues: In some cases, the doctor may conduct a kidney biopsy to start the Kidney Failure Treatment. This is done to remove a small piece of kidney tissue. This may help them to identify the severity of the kidney failure and monitor the treatment given for kidney failure.
Treatments for Acute Renal Failure
Acute Renal Failure Treatment at the right time can save a person’s life. Treatment of Acute Renal Failure involves the following:
Intravenous fluids if the ARF is caused by a lack of fluids in your blood. Doctors may recommend medications if acute kidney failure causes you to have too much fluid
Medications to control potassium levels in your blood. This will be done if your kidneys aren’t filtering potassium out of your blood properly.
Medications to restore calcium levels in the blood. This will be done if calcium is too low in your blood.
Haemodialysis If toxins have been building up in your blood for a long time. This will help in removing the toxins and excess fluids from your body while your kidneys recover. Dialysis is a process in which a machine pumps blood out of the body with the help of an artificial kidney.
CARE Hospitals is known for its expertise in the treatment of the most complex kidney-related diseases, including acute kidney failure treatment in Hyderabad and other facilities. At CARE Hospitals we understand that patients with kidney disease need quality care, guidance, and hope. We have some of the leading nephrologists in India, who work closely with physical and occupational therapists to develop a comprehensive, individualized treatment plan, keeping in mind the patient’s diagnosis, lifestyle, and professional requirements.
CARE Hospitals provide a full range of services to ensure that the best possible outcomes are achieved by our doctors in a range of disorders from congenital to acquired and degenerative. Our nephrologists holistically cover all aspects of treatment, including early intervention, transplant support, and dialysis services, like peritoneal dialysis (CAPD) and clinical research,
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