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Kidney Infarctions

Posted Apr 18 2011 12:00am



One complication of Sickle-cell disease is Sickle-cell nephropathy and chronic renal failure.

Nephropathy
is caused by the long term usage of analgesics (pain medicines). These pain medicines include aspirin, acetaminophen, and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, or NSAIDs.

Over use of pain medicines can cause a form of nephropathy called "chronic analgesic nephritis," which causes Kidney function change by
a. loss and shriveling of tubules
b. thickening and scarring of tissue
c. inflammation.

Specifically, long term use of the analgesic has been linked to death of kidney cells.

Renal Failure is the result of a kidney infarction. This is when a kidney artery is being blocked, compressed, ruptured by trauma, or interruption of blood supply causes the cells to die.

The result of this damage is also known as kidney failure. Kidney failure is a medical condition in which the kidney’s fail to adequately filter toxins and waste products from the blood.

Problems frequently encountered in kidney malfunction include abnormal fluid levels in the body, increased acidity in the blood, abnormal levels of potassium, calcium, phosphate, and (in the longer term) anemia, as well as delayed healing in broken bones.

Depending on the cause, blood loss in the urine and protein loss in the urine may occur. Long-term kidney problems have significant repercussions on other diseases, such as cardiovascular disease.

Renal failure can be divided into two categories:

1. Acute kidney injury - Acute kidney failure usually occurs when the blood supply to the kidneys is suddenly interrupted or when the kidney becomes overloaded with toxins.

Unlike in chronic kidney disease, the kidneys can often recover from acute failure, allowing the patient to resume a normal life.

2. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) can develop slowly and initially, show few symptoms. Renal function measurement is persistently poor. Sickle-cell complication falls into this category.

Where there is little renal function, dialysis and kidney transplantation may be treatment options.

How is chronic renal failure (kidney disease) found? By measuring size, blood and urine tests various things are discovered
a. Flow rate of filtered fluid through the kidney.
b. Kidney size.
c. Levels of Creatinine (high).
d. Increased acidity in the blood.
e. Abnormal levels of Potassium, Calcium, Phosphate.
f. Anemia - less than the normal quantity of hemoglobin (red blood cells)

BEWARE:

People with Sickle-cell Disease should keep track of their blood test results. Check to see if levels are too high or too low and do WHATEVER you can do to help correct the amounts (if possible).

Overuse of common drugs such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and acetaminophen can also cause chronic kidney damage. Pace yourself when taking these medications, AND drink lot’s of water!!!!

Links:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sickle_cell_nephropathy
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Renal_failure
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sickle-cell_disease#Complications
http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK22238/

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