Most people are already hospitalized when they develop acute kidney failure. If you or a loved one develops signs and symptoms of kidney failure, bring up your concerns with your doctor or nurse.
If you aren't in the hospital, but have signs or symptoms of kidney failure, make an appointment with your family doctor or a general practitioner. If your doctor suspects you have kidney problems, you may be referred to a doctor who specializes in kidney disease (nephrologist).
Before your meeting with the doctor, write down your questions. Consider asking:
- Are my kidneys working properly?
- Do I have kidney failure?
- What's causing my kidney problems?
- What kinds of tests do I need?
- Will my kidneys recover?
- What are my treatment options?
- What are the potential risks of each treatment option?
- Do I need dialysis?
- Do I need to go to the hospital?
- How long will I need to stay in the hospital?
- I have these other health conditions. How can I best manage them together?
- Do I need to follow any restrictions?
- Do I need to eat a special diet?
- Can you refer me to a dietitian to help me plan my diet?
- Should I see a specialist? Will my insurance cover that?
- Is there a generic alternative to the medicine you're prescribing me?
- Do you have any printed materials that I can take with me? What websites do you recommend?
Don't hesitate to ask questions during your appointment as they occur to you.
July 06, 2012
- Goldman L, et al. Cecil Medicine. 24th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/das/book/body/191371208-2/0/1492/0.html#. Accessed May 29, 2012.
- Bope ET, et al. Conn's Current Therapy. Philadelphia, Pa.: Saunders Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?eid=4-u1.0-B978-1-4377-0986-5..C2009-0-38984-9--TOP&isbn=978-1-4377-0986-5&about=true&uniqId=236797353-5. Accessed May 29, 2012.
- Ferri FF. Ferri's Clinical Advisor 2012: 5 Books in 1. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2012. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05611-3..C2009-0-38601-8--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05611-3&uniqId=291436269-101. Accessed May 29, 2012.
- Marx JA, et al. Rosen's Emergency Medicine: Concepts and Clinical Practice. 7th ed. Philadelphia, Pa.: Mosby Elsevier; 2010. http://www.mdconsult.com/books/about.do?about=true&eid=4-u1.0-B978-0-323-05472-0..X0001-1--TOP&isbn=978-0-323-05472-0&uniqId=230100505-57. Accessed May 29, 2012.
- Acute kidney injury nutrition therapy. Nutrition Care Manual. American Dietetic Association. http://nutritioncaremanual.org/index.cfm. Accessed May 29, 2012.
- Reclast (zoledronic acid): Drug Safety Communication - New contraindication and updated warning on kidney impairment. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/Drugs/DrugSafety/ucm270199.htm. Accessed May 31, 2012.
- Reclast (prescribing information). East Hanover, N.J.: Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp.; 2011. http://www.pharma.us.novartis.com/product/pi/pdf/reclast.pdf. Accessed May 31, 2012.
- Zometa (prescribing information). East Hanover, N.J.: Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corp.; 2011. http://www.pharma.us.novartis.com/product/pi/pdf/Zometa.pdf. Accessed May 31, 2012.
- Eat right to feel right on hemodialysis. National Kidney and Urologic Diseases Information Clearinghouse. http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/KUDiseases/pubs/eatright/index.aspx. Accessed June 13, 2012.
- Albright RC (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. June 11, 2012.
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