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Acute Kidney Injury

Nephrology & Hypertension serving Middle Tennessee

Acute Kidney Injury services offered throughout Middle tennessee

Shortness of breath, fluid retention, confusion, and weakness could indicate acute kidney injury, also referred to as acute kidney failure. At Southern Kidney Specialists, with locations throughout Middle Tennessee, the expert nephrology team diagnoses and treats acute kidney injury to prevent life-threatening complications. Call the nearest office to schedule an appointment, or use the online booking feature today.

What is acute kidney injury?

Acute kidney injury (acute kidney failure) happens when your kidneys suddenly stop working properly. Their job is to filter waste products and eliminate excess fluids from your blood. When the kidneys fail to function properly, dangerous problems quickly develop, often within a few days. 

Visit Southern Kidney Specialists at the first sign of kidney injury or failure, as getting the proper treatment early may reverse the condition and restore normal kidney function.

What are the symptoms of acute kidney injury?

The common symptoms of acute kidney injury include:

  • Shortness of breath
  • Fluid retention
  • Decreased urine output 
  • Confusion
  • Fatigue
  • Weakness
  • Nausea
  • Chest pain or pressure
  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Coma
  • Seizures

Sometimes, you don’t notice any symptoms of acute kidney injury that cause failure, and your specialist detects it via lab tests done for other medical reasons.

When left untreated, however, complications that may develop include permanent kidney damage or even death in severe cases.

What are the risk factors for acute kidney injury?

The common causes and risk factors for developing acute kidney injury include:

  • Direct kidney damage
  • Ureter blockages
  • Impaired kidney blood flow
  • Blood pressure medicines
  • Blood loss
  • Fluid loss
  • Heart disease
  • Heart attack
  • Liver failure
  • Infections
  • Severe allergic reaction
  • Extreme dehydration
  • Severe burns
  • Blood clots
  • Glomeruli inflammation
  • Lupus
  • Scleroderma
  • Tumors
  • Enlarged prostate
  • Kidney stones
  • Nerve damage

Your risk also increases because of older age, high blood pressure, diabetes, heart failure, kidney disease, liver disease, and certain cancers and treatments. 

Prevention measures include taking medicines exactly as directed by your doctor, properly managing chronic diseases, and adopting healthy lifestyle habits that include regular exercise, a healthy diet, and limited or no alcohol. 

How is acute kidney injury diagnosed?

To find out if you have acute kidney injury or failure, the Southern Kidney Specialists team reviews your medical history and symptoms, checks your vital signs, and completes a physical exam. They may measure your urine output or order urinalysis, blood tests, imaging procedures, or a kidney biopsy.

How is acute kidney injury treated?

The acute kidney injury treatment that’s best for you depends on the severity and cause of your condition. You might need to stay in a hospital for a short time, receive intravenous (IV) fluids, take medications, or undergo dialysis to remove toxins and excess fluid from your blood. 

Your provider may suggest you make dietary changes, such as choosing foods lower in potassium and phosphorus and those that are free from added salt.

If you have acute kidney injury, see the Southern Kidney Specialists team as soon as possible by calling the office or booking an appointment online today.