1. Renal pyramid • 2. Interlobular artery • 3. Renal artery • 4. Renal vein 5. Renal hilum • 6. Renal pelvis • 7. Ureter • 8. Minor calyx • 9. Renal capsule • 10. Inferior renal capsule • 11. Superior renal capsule • 12. Interlobular vein • 13. Nephron • 14. Minor calyx • 15. Major calyx • 16. Renal papilla • 17. Renal column
Kidneys are your blood filters, filtering out all the impurities and waste, these filters are called Glomeruli All the filtered bad stuff is passed into the urine and disposed of, the clean filtered blood is then passed back into the bloodstream through a vein, clever things these kidneys aren’t they?, so keep them healthy, you can’t undo damaged done to the kidneys but you can slow down the damaging effects or even stop it getting worse by keeping your blood pressure down.
So what is the link between Diabetes and kidney disease? Long term diabetes can change the small blood vessels and in turn damage the kidneys resulting in kidney failure; the damage usually starts within a year or two in 6 to 27% of Type 1 diabetics, and between five to ten years in 25 to 50 % of Type 2 sufferers.
One of the big problems with diabetic kidney disease is that it’s not easy to see it happening, it sort of creeps up on you, and its only when it’s taken hold can you see some symptoms these can include fatigue, nausea, itchy skin heartburn and a metal taste in the mouth, controlling high blood pressure is one of the functions of the kidneys which is why it’s so very important to control it in diabetics.
High blood pressure can accentuate the decline of the kidneys control of high blood pressure; so you see it’s a bit of a vicious circle
Diabetic kidney disease is the most common cause of kidney failure in the UK
You are at an increased risk of contracting Diabetic kidney disease from the following factors
- The longer you’ve had diabetes
- If your sugar levels are too high for too much of the time
- If you smoke
- If there’s some protein in your urine
- If you have high blood pressure
- The older you are (Not much you can do about this one)
- If you’re male (Or this)
- So how can you treat diabetic kidney disease?
1. Medicines such as ACE inhibitors most of these medicines end in pril, ARBs most of these end with artan, Calcium channel blockers these end in pine, and Thiazide diuretics, there are other drugs that can be used it all depends on what other conditions you have, you might also be put on insulin.
2. Controlling your blood pressure by diet and exercise or medication, its needs to be kept at around 130/80 mmHg.
3. if you are at an advanced stage of kidney disease you will need to reduce the amount of protein in your diet, and at “End stage kidney disease” dialysis and ultimately a transplant.