Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Kidney disease and general immunity

 First you need to know what the kidneys do. They:

-regulate blood pressure through the renin angiotensin aldosterone system 
-regulate phosphorus, potassium, chloride, sodium and calcium in the blood
-clean your blood by filtering waste products.
-stimulate red blood cell production
-control water balance

The kidney is a complex organ that works in synergy with the heart and vascular system, urinary system, the skeletal system and many other body systems. The kidneys go far beyond filtering waste from the blood. The kidneys also work in conjunction with your general immune system. When your kidneys are in a compromised state they are unable to function the way they are designed. Hence, your overall health is effected. Including your skin.

Kidney failure is a progressive process. Once it starts, there is no stopping it. Upon diagnosis your physician will discuss with you options to delay the progression. Nutrition plays a big role.

Those with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are most at risk for skin cancer. Reasons not limited to:  Medication related. Some medications cause skin sensitivity to the sun thereby increasing sun burn risk. Vitamin D is activated in the kidney. Those with kidney failure are unable to convert vitamin D to its active form which make getting vitamin D through their diet a challenge. CKD decreases the "sun vitamin" Vitamin D. Since sun exposure stimulates Vitamin D production, talk with your physician about getting the right amount of daily sun exposure.

With the immune system compromised, there is an increased risk of infection. CKD causes chronic systemic inflammation. The presence of inflammatory cells alone cause a wide variety of health problems. CKD contributes to patient mortality and morbidity.

It is critical you see your physician regularly and follow his/her advice. If you choose to seek alternative therapies do due diligence and learn all you can before starting any holistic treatment
regimen. As always you want to discuss this with your doctor.

Good health,

Trisha M. Pacenti RN,BSN