Low kidney function

Posted by vivianwaters @vivianwaters, Dec 9, 2020

Today I found out that my kidney function is low. The dr told me that there wasn’t anything to be concerned about. Is this true?

@vivianwaters Welcome to Mayo Connect! We are a group of patients, family members, and caregivers here, who share our experiences and offer support as we each journey on our own health travels.

You have just found out your kidney function is low. The function of a kidney is usually signified by the eGFR, or glomeruli filtration rate. What did the Dr tell you it is? Like most organs in our body, our solid organs tend to slow down a bit naturally as we age. The kidneys are real workhorses, filtering a lot of unneeded materials out of our bodies.

Deep breath, please. Until you have more information, and when you care to share with me, we'll walk through this one step at a time. Is there any family history of kidney problems, or have your experienced any before?
Ginger

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@vivianwaters

I'm sorry to hear that your kidney function has been found to be low. While it's never good to be overly stressed I do think you owe it to yourself to be proactive and learn more.

Kidneys are damaged by excessive salt and high blood pressure, being overweight, dehydration, a number of diseases and many other things.

There is a lot of good information on the National Kidney Foundation's website.

Did your doctor give you any reasons why your kidneys function was below optimal? Is the a plan to retest in the future?

Jolinda

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@jolinda

@vivianwaters

I'm sorry to hear that your kidney function has been found to be low. While it's never good to be overly stressed I do think you owe it to yourself to be proactive and learn more.

Kidneys are damaged by excessive salt and high blood pressure, being overweight, dehydration, a number of diseases and many other things.

There is a lot of good information on the National Kidney Foundation's website.

Did your doctor give you any reasons why your kidneys function was below optimal? Is the a plan to retest in the future?

Jolinda

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I was not given a reason why my kidney was los. Dr did not mention retesting.

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In all probability your lab results were pretty good, therefore the doctor made a positive comment. Suggest you ask a medical assistant for a copy of the report.

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@vivianwaters

I was not given a reason why my kidney was los. Dr did not mention retesting.

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@vivianwaters There are many factors why a kidney function level may be "low". It might be slightly lower than your normal, and could be caused by something as simple as being slightly dehydrated the day of blood draw! Like @veteran1950 mentioned, contact your dr's office, or the lab, and get at least the last two labwork reports, so you can see for yourself what the dr is speaking about.

Do you have any underlying health conditions?
Ginger

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I have asthma, osteoporosis, IBS, hiatal hernia, recurring sinus infections, allergies, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, recurring fatigue, and sleep apnea

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@vivianwaters Thank you for listing your other issues. One of the leading causes for kidney problems is untreated/uncontrollable high blood pressure, if you were not aware of that. That is what caused my husband's kidney problems. [my kidney problem is from a very rare autoimmune disease].

Have you considered getting a thorough physical exam and bloodwork, in order to maximize your health? You might find that changing up your diet, lifestyle, medications, and exercise would go a long way to helping. I know it's a big task – been there myself! It's one of those "okay, how do I work on making this better?" Lab tests look at several values to come together to see if there is something to consider.

I hope this has not confused you! Please let me know, okay?
Ginger

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@ryman

My GFR was tested because I was having a CT scan with dye. It came back as 50 and should have been at least 60. They went ahead with the dye and my doctor hasn’t mentioned this. Should I be concerned? Thank you.

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@ryman Seeing a lower than expected eGFR for your kidneys can be quite a surprise, and possibly more stress-producing than the CT scan.

Take into account the trend of the eGFR values over a course of time, not just a single reading. What have you been seeing? There are many factors that can affect a single reading, from your hydration level, overall well-being that day, and medications you are taking. You said your doctor has not addressed this with you. Do you plan to ask about this value the next time you see him/her?
Ginger

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My GFR was tested because I was having a CT scan with dye. It came back as 50 and should have been at least 60. They went ahead with the dye and my doctor hasn’t mentioned this. Should I be concerned? Thank you.

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@ryman

My GFR was tested because I was having a CT scan with dye. It came back as 50 and should have been at least 60. They went ahead with the dye and my doctor hasn’t mentioned this. Should I be concerned? Thank you.

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Hi @ryman, I moved your message to this recent discussion that @vivianwaters started just a few days ago on the same topic: Low kidney function.

You may also be interested to review this related discussion that you started in 2017.
– Possible low kidney function https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/possible-low-kidney-function/

Ryman, what, if anything, has changed in your kidney function and daily living since you first posted?

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@ryman

My GFR was tested because I was having a CT scan with dye. It came back as 50 and should have been at least 60. They went ahead with the dye and my doctor hasn’t mentioned this. Should I be concerned? Thank you.

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Hello @ryman
I can understand your concern about a change in your GFR. If your doctor has not talked with you about it you can certainly call the office and ask about it. You can also request a repeat of the test to see if it is still low.

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@ryman

My GFR was tested because I was having a CT scan with dye. It came back as 50 and should have been at least 60. They went ahead with the dye and my doctor hasn’t mentioned this. Should I be concerned? Thank you.

Jump to this post

Hello @ryman,

I hope you are doing well. Has your doctor helped you to understand the reason for the change in your GFR?

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