Chronic Kidney Disease

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Kidney disease 1 Running Head: CHRONIC KIDNEY DISEASE Understanding Chronic Kidney Disease Kim Prior Rock Valley College Kidney disease 2 Understanding Chronic Kidney Disease Chronic kidney disease is a growing problem with increasing numbers of patients being diagnosed and those beginning dialysis or the transplant process. “Currently, 26 million Americans have CKD…and 111,000 patients were newly diagnosed with end-stage renal disease in 1 year” (Castner, 2010, p. 26). Chronic kidney disease develops over years and can be considered a silent disease because many patients with this disease are diagnosed while being tested for another condition. Signs and symptoms of the disease are dependent on the cause,…show more content…
As the kidneys become more damaged the ability decreases showing a low specific gravity. Blood tests show increased levels of BUN and creatinine. An abnormal Kidney disease 3 blood count indicates anemia due to decreased production of erythropoietin (Castner, 2010). A CT scan or MRI can evaluate the anatomy and function of the kidneys to help determine the cause and stage of the disease. A renal biopsy may also be performed. These diagnostic tests determine the progression of the disease. There are five stages of chronic kidney disease. The treatment plan depends on the stage of the disease. If it is diagnosed in stage one, the patient and physician can work to treat the contributing factors and slow the progression of the disease. By the fifth stage the patient is on dialysis, needs a transplant, or in the most severe cases is in hospice care (Castner, 2010). Educating the patient is a very important part of the nursing role. The patient with chronic kidney disease needs to be educated on the disease process, how to slow the progression of the disease, medications, diet restrictions, dialysis and how to care for the dialysis access site, and the importance of regular visits with their physician. The more a patient knows, the more he/she can be proactive in the treatment plan. Kidney disease is manageable if diagnosed early and the patient needs to understand that it is not a death sentence! I was so excited
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