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Kidneys are the key elements when it comes to maintaining the whole body’s health. Similar to natural filters, they remove waste products or unnecessary fluid from our bloodstream. Kidneys also ensure the smooth regulation of blood into your whole body. 

However, some diseases or conditions can rapidly cause kidney function to decline, leading to AKI. Understanding the different causes of this disease can help individuals restore their kidney functions and prevent long-term health issues. But the question is: What would cause acute kidney injury?

Reasons for Acute Renal Failures

An acute kidney injury may have multiple factors causing it;

  • Reduced Blood Flow to the Kidneys: Specifically, dehydration, severe blood loss, heart failure, or vasculature narrowing will affect blood flow to the kidneys, increasing the risk of undernourishment in the kidneys.
  • Direct Harm to Kidneys: Particular medications, infections, toxic substances, and autoimmune disorders including Lupus may be able to pave the way for kidney damage directly by the filtration units in kidneys, which subsequently might impair filtering functions and finally cause kidney disease.
  • Blocked Urine Flow: Kidney stones, blood clots or prostate enlargement sends urine down the wrong drain while a backup of toxic and water waste accumulates within your kidneys and impairs their function.

The Clinical Manifestations of an Acute Kidney Injury

The timely identification of acute kidney injury at the initial stage determines the appropriateness of intervention and favorable outcomes. Common symptoms may include:

  • Reduced Urine Output: Infrequent urination or low urine volume will be AKI’s earliest symptom.
  • Swelling: Impaired kidneys are associated with the accumulation of water that makes the legs, feet, and eyelids swell.
  • Fatigue and Weakness: The buildup of the waste in the blood and its components may help fatigue and a lack of energy, being responsible for the sensations of being tired and a lowering of vitality.
  • Nausea and Vomiting: When waste can’t be expelled by our bodies through routine excretion procedures, symptoms like nausea and vomiting may take place as part of a defense mechanism by the body.
  • Disorientation: The critical cases of AKI have a negative effect on the brain, thus cognitive function will become impaired often resulting in disorientation and confusion.
  • Shortness of Breath: Fluid accumulation can narrow the airways and increase breathless sensation.

Risk Factors for an Acute Kidney Injury

There are various factors which increase your risk for AKI, including:

  • Age: Older patients are more susceptible to AKI than other age categories.
  • Chronic Health Conditions: Chronic health problems that include high blood pressure, diabetes, and cardiovascular diseases increase one’s likelihood of suffering from AKI problems.
  • Hospitalization and Surgery: Serious illnesses or surgeries that stress out kidneys can put immense pressure on their functioning, placing undue strain on kidney function.
  • Certain Medications: Certain pain relievers and antibiotics, particularly when taken outside their intended course, can harm kidney health if misused.
  • Dehydration: Failing to consume adequate fluid intake may reduce blood flow to your kidneys and compromise kidney function, decreasing their functionality and the quality of their service.
  • Severe Bleeding: Extreme blood loss deprives kidneys of oxygenated blood needed for function and must be addressed urgently to maintain good kidney health.

Recognizing these risk factors and symptoms early can assist with early diagnosis and swift treatment for AKI, mitigating its adverse impact on kidney function and overall health.

Read more: CKD Risk Factors

Diagnostic Tests for Acute Kidney Injury

Diagnosing AKI usually entails performing several diagnostic tests simultaneously.

  • Blood Tests: Blood tests designed to evaluate kidney health typically detect elevated creatinine and blood urea nitrogen levels that indicate kidney impairment.
  • Urine Tests: Urinalysis can provide a valuable clue when changing urine composition with AKI.
  • Imaging Tests: Imaging techniques like ultrasonography, CT scan, or MRI may be applied to examine the condition of kidneys and, consequently, locate a potential blockage or damage in them.

How is AKI Treated? 

What would cause acute kidney injury

3d rendered medically accurate illustration of adrenal gland cancer

Treatment for AKI depends upon its cause; in certain instances, kidney function may improve with effective management of its root condition such as blood pressure regulation or infection control. Some common treatment modalities for this include:

  • Treat the Underlying Cause: Initial treatment should address and solve the issue’s root.
  • Intravenous Fluids: Rehydration is paramount for most problems associated with kidney health. Intravenous Fluids offer supplementary help when needed.
  • Medication: Diuretics could increase the amount of urine produced but the medicine may be required to control the blood pressure or electrical imbalances.
  • Dialysis: Dialysis becomes necessary when kidney disease has reached its extreme stage and the kidney cannot work well in clearing the waste products and excessive fluids from the blood.

Dr. Bismah’s Approach Vs. AKI in General?

Dr. Bismah prefers taking a kidney holistic approach when treating AKI symptoms; her methods differ significantly:

  • Holistic Kidney Care: Dr. Bismah advocates holistic kidney health as part of her approach, including dietary adjustments, stress alleviation techniques, and herbal remedies (with proper advice from qualified healthcare providers before use) designed to strengthen kidney function and facilitate healing.
  • Root Cause Analysis: Doctor Bismah points in the right direction and emphasizes that the AKI issues should be found and treated as fast as possible so that this kind of incident will not reoccur.
  • Individualized Treatment Plans: Dr. Bismah addresses patients with a personalized plan that is exclusively constructed according to each client’s health conditions and lifestyle, including preexisting diseases.
  • Preventive Measures: Dr. Bismah encourages patients through personal interaction and by controlling problematic factors such as hypertension and diabetes.
  • Nutritional Guidance: Dr. Bismah emphasizes the vital role of diet in kidney health. She suggests kidney-friendly menu plans to regulate blood pressure, alter protein intake as necessary, and enhance overall well-being.
  • Supplements and Herbal Remedies: Dr. Bismah would integrate specific supplements or herbal supplements to boost kidney function or address nutritional deficiencies into treatment plans, but all medication interactions should be considered.
  • Stress Management: Dr. Bismah recognizes chronic stress’s adverse impacts on overall health, such as kidney function, and may suggest stress reduction techniques like yoga, meditation, or breathing exercises for healing and well-being.
  • Patient Education: Dr. Bismah equips his patients with knowledge. She empowers her patients by offering clear insights into AKI, its causes, and treatment options while encouraging active involvement in their healthcare journey.

Check out our blog post on “Low Potassium Meat” here!

Final Thoughts

Although AKI may seem daunting, early diagnosis and proper treatment usually result in full recovery. When faced with AKI, Dr. Bismah’s holistic approach can provide effective management while supporting overall kidney health promotion. 

When your kidneys are functioning properly, it helps in the overall smooth functioning of the body. Because any sort of problem in any body part can lead to severe discomfort and additional health issues. Make an appointment now with her so she can discuss your individual needs to tailor an AKI management strategy just for you!