Mild kidney insufficiency: How fast does it progress?

Posted by spudmato @spudmato, Jul 11 11:03am

While I plan on a detailed discussion next week with my PCP, I wonder what the long tern prognosis is for “mild – if there is such a thing (I guess it depends to a degree as to who has it) kidney insufficiency. I doubt that it is a “one fits all” answer seeing that there are a number of other complications. It may be difficult to separate the risk factor/level from the whole. How fast does it normal progress?

@spudmato, from what I've read from other members with chronic kidney disease, you are fortunate to have discovered your kidney insufficiency at an early stage. Many discovered their kidney issues only at stage 3 or 4. I'd like to bring in members @kamama94 @gingerw @cehunt57 @bdade59 @predictable @trishanna @basslakebabe19 and others. I'm confident that they can offer suggestions to help you prepare for your upcoming consult with your PCP.

What questions are you planning to ask?

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@colleenyoung

@spudmato, from what I've read from other members with chronic kidney disease, you are fortunate to have discovered your kidney insufficiency at an early stage. Many discovered their kidney issues only at stage 3 or 4. I'd like to bring in members @kamama94 @gingerw @cehunt57 @bdade59 @predictable @trishanna @basslakebabe19 and others. I'm confident that they can offer suggestions to help you prepare for your upcoming consult with your PCP.

What questions are you planning to ask?

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@spudmato, welcome to a wonderful group of people who exchange ideas and information and who care about and support one another.

I love your name! Although in the past renal patients were to avoid or limit them, with newer products some of us can have specific kinds of both spuds and matoes in judicious (meaning small) amounts IF one's care team agrees.

A certain amount of decline in kidney function is normal as we age. Not only is age a factor, so is gender and (though I hesitate to bring up what seems to have become a sensitive subject) so does race.

I am stage 3b but sometimes go down to stage 4, depending on what else is going on with me medically, but so far have come back up to 3b. I have been told by my nephrologist and pcp that I can live into my 80s or longer if I watch my diet, drink the proper amount of fluids, get adequate rest, etc. I'm 75 so 80s sound good to me. Younger, otherwise healthier people in earlier stages than mine can be stable for years and years, depending on a myriad of factors including sex, ethnicity, and lifestyle.

An appropriate renal diet is very important no matter what stage you find yourself in so you may want your pcp to send you to a good nephrologist and a qualified renal dietitian.

Meanwhile, don't panic. You sound very logical but as a usually calm person, when I heard my diagnosis my knickers got twisted until I learned there is hope.

As you think of questions, you can always jot them down to ask your doctor at your next appointment.

Please let us know what you find out. We're all in this together so please remember that love and hope live here; join us as often as you can. Once again, welcome!

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@spudmato It's always nerve-wracking to hear a medical professional make a comment like this, isn't it? You feel your life has turned upside down, and they say "mild". A great place to start is from one of knowledge and education, which you are doing. Finding out your eGFR, known as percentage of kidney function, is important. Remember we are each different. As @kamama94 said, we naturally lose function as we age, but if there is another factor, you want to find that out. Genetic dispositions, medication side effect, lifestyle, high blood pressure, diabetes complication, all can play a part. Knowing this will help you manage daily and in the long run.

Ask your Dr about a referral to a good nephrologist. "If I was your sibling, where would you send me?" personalizes it, and hopefully places importance on a good new member of your medical team. Your PCP may not be who you turn to for the tough questions on your new issue, so don't be surprised if they defer your questions to a better trained specialist. "What can I do to make the best of the situation?" "Are there other organs affected?"

Dietary changes will not only be healthier for you, but may assist your issue. Besides the info you get here on Mayo Connect, research support groups in your area. There is also rsnhope.org who offers online Zoom meetings for kidney disease patients.

We're here to help each other! Do you have contributing health factors, if you care to share?
Ginger

Liked by kamama94, fiesty76

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@spudmato
As you've already guessed the progression of mild kidney insufficiency varies based on individual circumstances. Here comes the bad news/good news as I see it… On the bad news side something has caused your kidney function to decline and this "something" may be out of your control depending on the diagnosis from your doctor. On the good news side it sounds like your kidney insufficiency has been caught early so there are likely a LOT of things that you can do to protect your kidneys. Maintaining optimal BMI, proper hydration, controlling blood pressure, keeping a healthy diet, daily exercise and managing stress all are things that can ease the strain on your kidneys. I've found it very helpful in my own journey to separate the "I can do something about it" items from the "this is just the way it is" items. Be prepared to ask for referrals to a kidney specialist, dietitian and/or physical therapist if you think they could be of help to you. Best of luck and keep us posted.

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Thanks, I'll update you.
I am an advocate of focusing on what I can control and acting to improve or maintain my situation, and accepting what I can't.

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I have my EGFR number. My concerns are (to be clarified) the impact of other issues such as high liver enzymes, possible bleeding in my GI tract (upper endoscopy likely in August), continued prednisone use due to COP, plus.
My concern is mainly for my (wonderful) wife whom I believe has suffered a significantly higher level of stress over my health (my having almost died in October – palliative doctors and all); whether it is from having been in business, or my beliefs, study or philosophy, etc., I am not particularity bothered by the possibilities. I look forward to living, not afraid if dying – today.
I am living a full life, relationships, continued study, heavy volunteering (coaching/mentoring small businesses for an affiliate of the SBA Pro Bono) reading, and other activities.
I suspect a kidney specialist may be in order.
Tomorrow will be informative.z It may be a question of explaining to my PCP how much I want to know at this time.
Best

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