Diagnosing Kidney Failure

It’s absolutely true that a strong and healthy heart is vital to your overall well-being. It’s also true that your heart relies on other organs within your body to maintain its strong beat. Healthy kidney function is a vital part of this intricate, life-sustaining process. In fact, if your kidneys fail to do their job, the entire system, including your heart, eventually breaks down.  

Farouk Marzouk, MD, is a top-rated vascular surgeon who leads our team here at Frontier Medical Care in the Bay Ridge area of Brooklyn, New York. We specialize in accurately diagnosing and effectively treating conditions that threaten your health, such as blocked coronary arteries, carotid artery disease, peripheral artery disease (PAD), and kidney failure.

Our team is happy to provide information about kidney failure and our role in diagnosing and treating this serious condition.

Kidney function basics

Most people are born with a pair of kidneys. Each of these purplish organs is about five inches long and three inches wide. Shaped like their namesake, the kidney bean, they’re part of the urinary system, which is responsible for removing certain waste products from your body and expelling them via urine.

Your kidneys start the process by filtering your blood to remove the surplus nutrients, fluids, and waste products that are unnecessary, and in some cases, even toxic to your health. 

Let’s talk about potassium, as an example. It’s a mineral found in bananas, sweet potatoes, mushrooms, leafy greens, some nuts, and other popular foods.

Your body requires a very precise balance of potassium to maintain healthy heart function. Too much potassium in your bloodstream (hyperkalemia) can cause a dangerously irregular, even life-threatening heart rhythm. Too little potassium (hypokalemia) can cause muscle weakness as well as irregular heart rhythms. 

Your kidneys work to keep the balance exactly right by filtering excess potassium and a variety of potentially harmful substances out of your blood.

What are the health complications of kidney failure?

Normal kidney function helps eliminate waste from the body, regulates blood volume and blood pressure, controls levels of electrolytes and metabolites, and helps control blood pH. So you can see how chronic kidney failure can impact nearly every system in your body.

Health problems related to kidney disease may include:

Note that you can live a perfectly normal life with just one kidney, but protecting the health of your remaining kidney becomes imperative in that case.

How do you diagnose chronic kidney disease?

Here at Frontier Medical Care, we use various minimally invasive techniques to accurately diagnose chronic kidney disease, including:

Our vascular team also completes a thorough evaluation of your current health, family history, and other issues that may help determine your risk of chronic kidney disease.

Issues that increase your odds of developing kidney failure include:

Because advanced or end-stage kidney failure eventually requires artificial filtration of your blood via dialysis as you await a kidney transplant, Dr. Marzouk also uses his expertise as a vascular surgeon to create dialysis access with a minimally invasive procedure performed here in our facility.

If you suspect you may be at risk for kidney failure, or you’ve been diagnosed with this serious condition and require dialysis access, schedule a visit here at Frontier Medical Care today.

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