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Diabetic Nephropathy

2013-01-25 15:58

Diabetic NephropathyDiabetic nephropathy refers to kidney damage due to diabetes. It is one of leading causes of kidney failure. Therefore, early detection and treatment of diabetic nephropathy is very important for the patients.

Causes of diabetic nephropathy

Each kidney is composed of hundreds of thousands of small units called nephrons. These tiny structures can filter wastes from your blood. However, high blood sugar can damage these nephrons over time and make them thick and scarred over time. As a result, a large amount of proteins like into urine, leading to proteinuria. Later, kidneys stop working completely. This is called kidney failure. It is reported that about 40% of people with diabetes will develop kidney damage in varying degrees.

How is diabetic nephropathy diagnosed?

Diabetic Nephropathy often starts and develops asymptomatically and slowly. Kidney damage begins 5 to 10 years before symptoms start. The problem is diagnosed using simple tests that check for a protein called albumin in the urine. In early stages of kidney damage, some protein may be found in your urine even you have no symptoms. Therefore, to find kidney damage early, it is important for people with diabetes to take regular testing.

* In type 1 diabetes, a urine test should be performed every year after you have had diabetes for 5 years.

* For children with diabetes, yearly testing should begin when the child is 10 years old and has had diabetes for 5 years.

* In type 2 diabetes, starting yearly testing once you are diagnosed with diabetes.

Symptoms of diabetic nephropathy

There are no symptoms in the early stages. As the condition develops, more proteins will leak into urine. You may notice foams in urine. Also as your kidneys are less able to do their job, swelling can be noticed in some body parts like feet and legs. Blood pressure and cholesterol and triglyceride levels rise too.

Treatment of diabetic nephropathy

General treatments

Diet:Proteins can increase how hard the kidneys must work. A low protein diet can decrease protein loss in the urine and increase levels of proteins in the blood. Also, foods high in salt and fats should be limited.

Medications: ACE inhibitors are commonly suggested to people with diabetes and they can slow kidney disease progression in addition to lowering blood pressure. Also, these medications are effective in reducing protein loss in urine.

Control levels of blood sugar and blood pressure:Tight control of blood sugar and blood pressure can reduce damage to kidneys. Additionally, losing weight and regular exercise also can help.

Kidney failure:The above treatments can slow down diabetic nephropathy progression, but are not enough to halt it completely. Kidney failure will be the final result. Dialysis and kidney transplant will be required eventually.

Our treatment

Combined therapy of TCM and modern western medicine technique is used to treat diabetic nephropathy. The therapy aims at stopping damage and reversing impaired renal function. It can stimulate the self-repairing of impaired nephrons in kidneys and restore the tiny structures. Thereby, it can give an improvement in renal function and help them avoid developing renal failure.

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