Stage 4 Kidney Disease | What is it? What can you do?
In this video we’re talking about stage 4 kidney disease and what it is, what you can do, and symptoms.
We have five stages of kidney disease. Five is kidney failure, where your kidneys are no longer able to do the job in your body. Stage four is a pretty severe state of kidney disease that you should take very serious and be very aggressive in your care. We track and monitor kidney function by gfr. which you’ll see on your blood work. Gfr has to be in a range from 15 to 30 to be considered stage four.
You can be at the lower end of your gfr meaning more advanced in the state in stage four kidney disease if your gfr is 15. You can be at a better state where your gfr is 30 where you’re still in stage four but you’re at the higher end towards stage four close to stage three kidney disease.
Stage four kidney disease comes along with a lot of symptoms. I’ve been through stage four so I know what it’s like, and there are so many symptoms you can have. Everybody can experience something different but generally you’ll feel fatigue, brain fog, possibly nausea, lightheaded, loss of appetite. You might have swelling in your ankles. You might have your blood pressure out of control. It can be a variety of things. It’s not a good feeling but if you really control things and are on top of your health and aggressive like doing the things we’re going to talk about you can really have a good quality of life. You can slow down the loss of kidney function and even stop it in a lot of cases. You can improve it.
So what do you do? You’re in stage four maybe you just found out, maybe you just decided to take it seriously, whatever it is during stage four kidney disease first you want to get the opinion of at least two nephrologists. Don’t settle on one. I‘d rather you not even settle on two. I‘d rather you get three but at least two nephrologist’s opinions you want to get.
You want to take all the medications. When it comes to stage four, your kidney is just not going to have the ability to control the blood pressure and do a lot of the body functions like help control anemia, which is a big problem with kidney disease. This is what really gives you a poor quality of life. We can control and fix these things and when we control and fix these things you have better kidney health. You can slow down the loss of kidney function by first taking all your meds.
If you’re having side effects, speak to your doctor about it. Some people take them at night so they can sleep off any side effects. Some people find they take it with food and it’s easier, so talk to your doctor and do whatever works for you. Get at least a couple opinions from nephrologists.
The second thing is diet. You have to start doing some dietary things because diet has such a big impact on kidney health. You want to get rid of and lower as much sodium or salt in your diet. You really gotta monitor everything to get those sodium levels down. Second, the diet that has consistently shown the best results, especially in this later stage of kidney disease, is a low to very low protein diet. You want to be on that type of diet. Get some type of guidance whether it’s books, looking at our videos, or getting some professional guidance from a nutritionist. This type of diet will really be beneficial.
Some people might need essential amino acids or keto analogs of essential amino acids to make up the protein, so you can look into that. Next you want to take supplements because you just can’t control everything without proper supplementation. When it comes to kidney health, you need to support the kidneys as nutritionally as possible. Some proper supplements like vitamin d is a basic one, but there’s a lot out there. If you’re in stage four be aggressive and do those things. Control your blood pressure, get on the meds, get on the diet, get on the supplements, and then you can see where you’re actually at. You are going to feel better.