Nephrology is the study of the normal functioning of kidneys as well as treatment or diseases related to it. Kidneys are essential for filtering out waste products and excess water from the body. They are also vital for retaining the fluid intake, electrolytes that may be altered by numerous conditions or medicines.
Nephrologists are kidney doctors who specialise in the care and treatment of renal or kidney related disorders. Broadly, the diseases that are treated by them include autoimmune diseases, kidney cancers, diabetic nephropathy, blood pressure and several others.
Nephrology deals with the study of the normal working of the kidneys as well as its diseases. The conditions that come under the scope of nephrology include –
• Renal Transplantations
• Urine abnormalities such as excess excretion of protein, sugar, blood, casts, and crystals
• Glomerular ailments that affect the tiny filtering systems of the kidneys known the glomerulus
• Cancers of the kidneys, bladder, and urethra
• Renal failure that can be acute, sudden, long-term or chronic
• Kidney infections
• Kidney and bladder stones
• Effects of diseases like diabetes and hypertension on the kidneys
• Acid-base imbalances
• Ill effects of toxins and drugs on the kidneys
• Nephrotic syndrome and nephritis
• Renal vascular diseases affecting the blood vessel networks within the kidneys
• Polycystic kidneys diseases where large cysts or fluid-filled sacs are formed within the kidney impairing its functions – this is congenital and inherited or genetic condition
• Tubulointerstitial diseases affecting the kidneys tubules
• Dialysis and its long-term complications – dialysis consists of haemodialysis as well as peritoneal dialysis
• Autoimmune diseases including lupus and autoimmune vasculitis
Many people don’t appreciate their health until they aren’t well. Not Eating, sleeping, and exercising catches up and then you can’t do much of anything until you recover. Sometimes , it’s important to constantly remind oneself to develop behaviors that will help you lead a healthy lifestyle.
Dr. Edward Mwaniki – CEO – NAIROBI ADVENTIST HOSPITAL