20 Sep Anemia in Patients With Chronic Kidney Disease
In medical science, anemia is a term used for the lack of red blood cells. Blood is an essential component of any human body system. It carries oxygen to every part of the body. In our body, blood is comprised of three main parts; white blood cells (WBCs), red blood cells (RBCs) and platelets. RBCs are responsible for carrying oxygen to different organs of the body. So, the patient with Chronic Kidney Disease is unable to produce the hormone which helps to develop RBCs, which as a result, causes anemia.
How the Kidneys are Affected by Anemia
The kidneys produce the hormone Erythropoietin (or EPO). This hormone supports the bone marrow in making RBCs in the blood. In patients with chronic kidney disease, the production of enough EPO does not take place. This results in an anemic condition that further increases the chances of more serious health issues such as brain hemorrhages due to insufficient supply of oxygen in the brain.
Symptoms of Anemia for Someone With Chronic Kidney Disease
While everyone’s body responds differently to chronic kidney disease, here are a few of the more common symptoms one may experience if they have anemia in conjunction with CKD:
- Fatigue due to lack of production and supply of oxygen in blood
- Headaches and problems concentrating on daily work
- Paleness in color: can be seen in eyes, nails and palms
- Breathing problems and dizziness
- Heavy feeling in chest with pain.
Complications Faced by the Patient
Mainly heart related issues arise due to anemia, as the disease is related to blood and the heart is the circulating machine for the body. Anemia can create irregular heartbeats in an unusual manner. A sudden increase in heart rate can occur. In extreme cases, damaging expansion of muscles in the heart may develop. Due to the high requirement of blood in the body, the heart can even fail in some cases.
Diagnosis of Anemia with Chronic Kidney Disease
The diagnosis of most diseases is mainly based on the blood reports, the medical history of the patient, and most importantly physical examination. The symptoms of the disease provide the indication and the diagnosis is prepared accordingly by the medical experts.
History of the patient: A person with chronic kidney disease is more prone to get anemia than those without. Some kidney disease can be hereditary.
Physical Examination: Physical examination is one of the key tools physicians use in diagnosing anemia with chronic kidney disease. As the doctor does their examination, they may ask the patient certain questions to either rule out or prove certain theories of diagnosis. There are a number of things doctors look for with anemia. Paleness in the body is one of the examples.
Blood Reports: The most common and probably most important test for any disease and planning of diagnosis starts from a total blood workup. With anemia, the number of RBCs in the blood gives the best information about the diagnosis.
Treatment of Anemia With Chronic Kidney Disease
It may be beneficial to consult a dietician or nutritionist to help treat your anemia through nutritional changes. The recovery should be done in phases. First, the treatment of anemia should be done by adding iron to diet. Vitamin B12 and folic acid can also help keep your kidneys healthy.
Dr. Reddy is currently conducting clinical trials for those dealing with issues of anemia with chronic kidney disease. If you are currently being treated for this condition, you may qualify to participate in our clinical research study. Study related medication, procedures, and doctor’s visits are FREE for clinical trial participants, and you will also be compensated for your participation. For more information, please contact Claudia, our Research Coordinator, at 714-968-1913.
Dr. Sue Reddy specializes in the treatment of infectious disease among many other specialties. She understands what is required to live a healthy, active life. Please feel free to take a look around her website and if you feel she provides services you may be interested in, give Dr. Reddy a call. Her staff would be more than happy to set up an appointment and answer any questions you may have.