At Harborview Rehabilitation and Care Center Doylestown we accommodate patients with a variety of needs. Our goal of providing high quality care to our local and extended community is facilitated by helping those who may be in need better understand certain conditions afflicting them. Our staff is well trained to treat all aspects and phases of chronic kidney disease. Continue reading to learn more about kidney disease and how Harborview Doylestown can help you or your loved one.
Understanding Chronic Kidney Disease
In the United States alone, over 37 million people suffer from chronic kidney disease. This serious medical condition is characterized as a loss of function over time and can lead to detrimental effects. These effects can result in a reduction in quality of life or eventual death if not properly treated. At times, victims of the disease tend to ignore symptoms or resist necessary changes in their lives to promote a healthy lifestyle living with this illness.
Signs To Watch For
Anyone can develop chronic kidney disease at any age. A diagnosis of diabetes or high blood pressure can significantly increase the chances of developing chronic kidney disease. Diabetes can play a significant role as high blood sugar will cause damage to various organs in your body including your kidneys, if unmanaged.
Individuals tend to gradually notice signs of the disease depending on how far the condition has advanced. If you or a loved one suffer from these symptoms, this may be a condition affecting you.
- lack of energy
- difficulty concentrating
- irregular appetite
- irregular sleep patterns
- muscle cramps
- swollen feet or ankles
- puffiness around the eyes
- frequent trips to the restroom, especially at night
Living with Chronic Kidney Disease
The CDC ranks chronic kidney disease (CKD) as one of the top ten causes of death and as many as 9 in 10 adults with CKD do not know they have CKD. A diagnosis with this condition is a serious matter that requires time and patience as adjustments to an individual’s lifestyle must be made. Medications and dietary changes will prolong the life of a patient, but must be adhered to. If a patient cannot adhere to their doctor’s recommendations, then kidney failure will follow.
What Harborview Offers to Chronic Kidney Disease Patients
Harborview Rehabilitation and Care Center at Doylestown offers a variety of services for patients suffering from different illnesses. Licensed nurses are always available as well as other on call physicians and consultants. A dietician on staff can help build a meal plan safe for those with a number of dietary concerns, such as those suffering with chronic kidney disease, diabetes, and other conditions.
During Short term care staff can review conditions with patients and describe related ailments so that individuals better understand their conditions. It is important to keep this disease managed as well as those associated with it. Harborview Rehabilitation and Care Center at Doylestown’s staff are fully certified and trained to properly care for patients suffering from this condition.
Staff will work with patients to follow their physician’s care plan to slow the progressions of the disease. Common medications given to address symptoms include enzyme inhibitors to treat high blood pressure, statins to lower high cholesterol levels, anemia treatment to produce healthy red blood cells, diuretics to reduce swelling in the body, and supplements such as vitamin D to help prevent blood vessels from being damaged by calcium deposits.
Understanding Nutrition Involved with Chronic Kidney Disease
What we put into our bodies is the fuel and building blocks for our organs to perform and grow. Depending on the severity of your chronic kidney disease, your doctor may suggest types of foods to be eaten or avoided to prevent strain on the kidneys. Such advice includes to lower the amount of sodium individuals consume by avoiding products with added salt such as frozen meals, canned vegetables and fast foods.
Potassium can pose a serious threat to someone suffering with kidney disease so avoiding foods such as bananas, oranges, and potatoes may be recommended. These can be replaced by apples, cabbage, carrots, and green beans. Spinach and tomatoes surprisingly contain potassium, but grapes and strawberries may be enjoyed with monitored sugar levels.
Limiting high protein foods such as meats, eggs, milk, and cheese is typically recommended.
Dangers of Unmanaged Kidney Disease Resulting in Kidney Failure
If an individual cannot properly manage their own condition, complications will arise stemming from the chronic illness. Kidney failure leads to fluid retention resulting in the swelling of extremities such as arms and feet. Heart and blood vessels are affected to problems with cardiovascular disease. An unexpected, but life-threatening condition, is an imbalance of potassium levels that can even be caused simply by an unregulated diet.
Your kidneys proper function is paramount to the health of our bodies. Damaging the kidneys decreases the body’s immune response and how it is able fight infection. Eventually kidney function ceases and patients must be placed on dialysis. The frequency of dialysis depends on the severity of the condition with the end goal being a full kidney replacement, but finding a a healthy compatible kidney from a live donor or even cadaver proved to be difficult as individuals are currently placed on a list after extensive interviews and tests.
Seeking Help with Chronic Kidney Disease
The staff of Harborview Rehabilitation and Care Center at Doylestown are available to help answer any questions you may have about your or your loved one’s medical conditions. Permanent placement is based on availability, clinical assessment, and approval from PA Medical Assistance or financial approval if self-pay. Reach out to our team to see what options may be available.