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Kidney disease is so common that as many as one out of 12 Americans experience it, but in the majority of cases, they're not aware of their health problems. The fact that the symptoms of kidney disease easily get confused with other illnesses is a key reason why so many fail to receive an accurate diagnosis. Furthermore, many of these symptoms only appear at later stages, so this makes it harder to spot the disease at an early stage. According to the American National Kidney Foundation as few as one out of ten people know they have kidney disease.

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Insomnia

The fact that kidney disease might cause problems getting to sleep brings home how hard it can be to recognize the issue at an early point. When a person's kidneys are functioning effectively, they filter out the toxins in their blood, but diseased kidneys cannot perform this task correctly. In this situation, the patient will often find it hard to get to sleep. There are many other reasons why people cannot quickly get to sleep. Maybe they are worried about how they'll pay their bills, or they took a long nap or stressed about work. Thus, this sleeping problem easily remains a hidden kidney disease symptom.

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Exhaustion

People with kidney disease frequently feel exhausted due to the poisons and other impurities that failing kidneys are unable to remove from their blood. Once again it's no simple matter to make a clear link between exhaustion and kidney disease. It's one of those feelings with multiple possible causes ranging from poor diet to a hectic lifestyle and everything in between. It's not unusual that the individual learns that kidney disease causes their exhaustion after receiving a proper diagnosis.

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Frequent Urination

Someone whose kidneys are damaged needs to pay more frequent calls to the bathroom, especially at night. The urination is sometimes painful. However, as is the case with most of these possible kidney disease symptoms the individual cannot for sure assume that this is the cause. For example, in the case of men in their 60s and older, a benign condition called prostatic hyperplasia (BPH) that comes with aging has similar symptoms.

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Bloody Urine

When the kidneys are diseased, this can result in blood leaking out into the urine. In this situation, the person must immediately go to the doctor. Kidney disease is only one possibility. There's a range of conditions affecting the kidneys, and it's easy to treat these issues (like a kidney stone) but requires proper investigation. Even though in all likelihood the situation is going to be one that's quickly remedied, the importance of early detection in kidney disease (and other life-threatening illnesses) should serve as a call to action.

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Skin Problems

The connection between kidney and skin problems is unlikely to be obvious. Fully operational kidneys help keep bones healthy and maintain a proper mineral balance in the bloodstream. If the kidneys start to fail, this balance of nutrients and minerals in the body becomes disturbed. So once the organs stop working well one of the effects might appear in the form of dry and itchy skin. This symptom occurs in the advanced stages of kidney disease.

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Swelling

People without medical knowledge are unlikely to make an association between swelling around the feet, ankles and kidney disease. However, anyone who learns about how kidneys work understands that one of their roles is to remove excess sodium from the body. Other illnesses can also cause such swelling, for example, heart disease or vein problems. If it happens, don't hesitate to get a thorough medical checkup.

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Appetite Loss

Everyone knows that a loss of appetite is a sign of illness, but not many people realize that kidney disease could cause this. Usually, the kidneys do an excellent job of removing poisons from the body. But when they cease working well, these poisons build up, and it can affect appetite. Let's hope the loss of appetite is merely the result of stress or some mild complaint. There's no need to panic if it happens once or twice but if this becomes a common condition, it's time to consult with the doctor to rule out the possibility of kidney disease.

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Vomiting

It is common knowledge that the body generates a feeling of nausea and causes a person to vomit for a variety of conditions. This same situation might also produce if the body becomes overloaded with poisons that the kidneys can no longer remove. Also, this happens when the kidneys fail to filter waste byproducts out of the body effectively. If you're vomiting regularly, a visit to the doctor is indeed in order.

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Trouble Breathing

People often become much more sensitive to the cold in old age or if they're experiencing low blood pressure. But there's also a sense of often feeling cold that's linked to kidney disease. This occurs because people with failing kidneys are prone to anemia, or a shortage of red blood cells. If this happens, the individual can feel cold even in a well-heated room. They also experience a severe lack of breath that makes walking difficult.

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Memory Loss

We all forget where we've put the keys from time to time. However, when a person cannot remember where they went last week, it could be due to aging, but memory loss in young and middle-aged people may be an indicator of kidney disease. When the kidneys malfunction it deprives the brain of the oxygen it needs to work at full capacity. In such a situation memory abilities decline. Kidney disease makes it much harder to concentrate. Some people might also begin to feel dizzy.

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Disclaimer

This site offers information designed for educational purposes only. You should not rely on any information on this site as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, treatment, or as a substitute for, professional counseling care, advice, diagnosis, or treatment. If you have any concerns or questions about your health, you should always consult with a physician or other healthcare professional.