Debunking the Myths Behind Chronic Kidney Disease

by Shane Power, President of Watertree Health 

We’re honored to now be partnered with the National Kidney Foundation (NKF). They are the leading organization dedicated to the awareness, prevention and treatment of kidney disease. The NKF assists hundreds of thousands of healthcare professionals, millions of patients and their families, and tens of millions of Americans at risk. The life-saving work performed by the NKF is so essential because 1 in 3 people in the U.S. may get CKD. That’s estimated to be over 30 million people in the United States. In recognition of National Kidney Month, we’d like to share some of the common myths we’ve learned about CKD from our friends at the National Kidney Foundation

As I get older, my blood pressure will stay the same.

Your blood pressure will gradually increase as you age. High blood pressure is the most common cause of kidney disease for the elderly and the second most common cause for others. Normal blood pressure is 120/80. If your blood pressure is higher than that, it’s recommended you speak with your physician to see what necessary steps you can take to get it under control. 

I have a sharp back pain, I think it’s my kidneys.

If you’re experiencing persistent back pain, that can be cause for concern. Back pain can be an indicator for possible spine or muscle damage. But there is a possibility that your kidneys are under distress. Pain in your lower back, under your ribs, or side can all be caused by kidney disease. It’s imperative you listen to your body and talk to your doctor.

With treatment, my blood pressure is normal. I can stop taking my blood pressure medication.

Unfortunately, this is incorrect. Maintaining normal blood pressure is critical for those who have kidney disease but also important for those without. Most blood pressure medications help protect your kidneys from further damage, so ending the use of medication would do more harm than good.

My kidneys are fine, I have no problem going to the bathroom.

Don’t be quick to make this assumption; even patients with kidney disease display no symptoms at first. The only way you can ensure your kidneys are in great shape is by getting a blood and urine test done by your physician.

We hope that after reading some of the popular myths behind CKD, you’ll be inspired to take a more active role in caring for your kidneys. Symptoms may not arise until it’s too late, but when caught early, CKD can be slowed or stopped. Prevention of kidney disease starts with 
knowing the facts. Schedule an appointment with your doctor today.

Updated: 3/4/19

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