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Kidney Health Check

Chronic Kidney Disease

Around 1 in 10 adult Australians (thats 1.7 million people) have signs of chronic kidney disease.

You have an increased risk of chronic kidney disease if you:

  • have diabetes
  • have high blood pressure
  • have heart problems (like heart failure or heart attack) or have had a stroke
  • have a family history of kidney failure
  • are obese with a BMI of 30 or higher
  • are a smoker
  • are 60 years or older
  • are of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin
  • have a history of acute kidney injury

Chronic kidney disease is called a ‘silent disease’ as there are often no warning signs. It is not uncommon for people to lose up to 90%t of their kidney function before getting any symptoms. There are, however, some signs that may indicate reduced kidney function and it’s important to take note of them. These can include:

  • high blood pressure
  • changes in the amount and number of times urine is passed
  • changes in the appearance of your urine (for example, frothy or foaming urine)
  • blood in your urine
  • puffiness in your legs, ankles or around your eyes
  • pain in your kidney area
  • tiredness
  • loss of appetite
  • difficulty sleeping
  • headaches
  • lack of concentration
  • itching
  • shortness of breath
  • nausea and vomiting
  • bad breath and a metallic taste in your mouth
  • muscle cramps
  • pins and needles in your fingers or toes.

These symptoms are very general and may be caused by other illnesses. However, if they are related to kidney disease they may gradually worsen as kidney function declines.

If you are experiencing a number of these symptoms, or think you are at increased risk of kidney disease, book an appointment with your GP at Glebe Hill Family Practice or GHFP Nurture and ask for a Kidney Health Check.

Kidney Health Check

Your kidney health check will include 3 tests:

  1. A blood test to find out the level of waste products in your blood and calculate what's called your estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR)
  2. A urine test to check for albumin (a type of protein) or blood in your urine
  3. A blood pressure test, as kidney disease causes high blood pressure and high blood pressure causes kidney disease

If kidney disease is found early, lifestyle changes and medication can increase the life of your kidneys and keep you feeling your best for as long as possible.

To have a Kidney Health Check please book an appointment with your GP.