Solitary kidney health

Posted by azkidney57 @azkidney57, Oct 16, 2019

I had a nephrectomy May 2019. Anyone notice any changes physically having a sole kidney? My energy level isn’t what it once was before my surgery. I occasionally have a drink with friends, not often, but I notice alcohol seems to disagree with me. I seem to have ill effects like headaches and more of a “hung over” feeling. I never drink more than 1-2 drinks. Also I notice if I don’t drink enough water I tend to feel more tired and I get a headache. My kidney function is normal. Everyone tells me people can live quite well with only one kidney. I told my PCP about my symptoms and he told me I should be fine with the single kidney as long as my labs are OK. Anyone else have any “symptoms” having a sole kidney? My surgery was 5 months ago.

Liked by Retired Teacher

After my surgery, I recovered quite quickly, I thought. Four or five months later, though, I still needed to rest more frequently. My energy level was down. In doing research about kidney disease, I discovered that it takes quite a while for your body to truly recover – up to a year. Eventually, I felt better. I didn't have headaches – perhaps someone else has had a problem with headaches. Surgery is very hard on one's body, so be sure and walk a lot, get plenty of sleep, drink enough water – whatever it takes to heal your body.

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@azkidney57 Some transplant centers have a protocol that say "no alcohol". I find that alcohol doesn't really agree with me anymore, so I just do not drink except maybe one drink every couple of months. As we get more years under our belts, our bodies take more time to recover from any major stressors, Your nephrectomy qualifies in that category. Be gentle on yourself. Remember your sole kidney is now doing the job that two used to do, so your fluid intake needs to be quality to help that kidney do its new job! So glad you have checked in and let us know how you are doing!
Ginger

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Had kidney/tumor removed last week, still recovering. Still do not know If I am free of cancer, seeing oncologists tomorrow morning for first time. Surgeon said the margins were negative.

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@haroldpingel1943

Had kidney/tumor removed last week, still recovering. Still do not know If I am free of cancer, seeing oncologists tomorrow morning for first time. Surgeon said the margins were negative.

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@haroldpingel1943 that’s great that the surgery is behind you, and that the margins were negative. Hopefully the oncologists will have good news for you too. There will be big sighs of relief, please let us know so we can feel that relief with you.
I see that is your first post, so please allow me to welcome you to Connect.
JK

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@contentandwell

@haroldpingel1943 that’s great that the surgery is behind you, and that the margins were negative. Hopefully the oncologists will have good news for you too. There will be big sighs of relief, please let us know so we can feel that relief with you.
I see that is your first post, so please allow me to welcome you to Connect.
JK

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Thanks, will keep posted.

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@azkidney57 I cannot speak to living with one kidney, but my mother had one kidney removed when I was nine years old. That was over sixty+ years ago. Back in those old days, there were no specialists in the town in which we lived. We had a family doctor, a surgeon, and an ob/gyn, and they were our friends. I do not know why they decided to remove a kidney; I do remember them saying it didn't work and was not formed correctly. But she had the surgery, and back in the old days she was in the hospital at least ten days. My dad hired a private nurse for her, and then she came home and was cared for at home until she was able to get around. We always had a maid to take care of the cooking and household chores, so no problem there. From that time forward she lived without incident with one kidney and I never remember that she had any problems as a result. I recall the surgeon saying the one good kidney would take over and function efficiently, and it did. My mother lived to age 78. Her kidney was fine when they did the autopsy. I tell you all of this so that you know that a person with one kidney can live a long life; she did and never worried about the situation. I wish you well.
Carol

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@retiredteacher

@azkidney57 I cannot speak to living with one kidney, but my mother had one kidney removed when I was nine years old. That was over sixty+ years ago. Back in those old days, there were no specialists in the town in which we lived. We had a family doctor, a surgeon, and an ob/gyn, and they were our friends. I do not know why they decided to remove a kidney; I do remember them saying it didn't work and was not formed correctly. But she had the surgery, and back in the old days she was in the hospital at least ten days. My dad hired a private nurse for her, and then she came home and was cared for at home until she was able to get around. We always had a maid to take care of the cooking and household chores, so no problem there. From that time forward she lived without incident with one kidney and I never remember that she had any problems as a result. I recall the surgeon saying the one good kidney would take over and function efficiently, and it did. My mother lived to age 78. Her kidney was fine when they did the autopsy. I tell you all of this so that you know that a person with one kidney can live a long life; she did and never worried about the situation. I wish you well.
Carol

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Thank you for comforting message.

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@retiredteacher

@azkidney57 I cannot speak to living with one kidney, but my mother had one kidney removed when I was nine years old. That was over sixty+ years ago. Back in those old days, there were no specialists in the town in which we lived. We had a family doctor, a surgeon, and an ob/gyn, and they were our friends. I do not know why they decided to remove a kidney; I do remember them saying it didn't work and was not formed correctly. But she had the surgery, and back in the old days she was in the hospital at least ten days. My dad hired a private nurse for her, and then she came home and was cared for at home until she was able to get around. We always had a maid to take care of the cooking and household chores, so no problem there. From that time forward she lived without incident with one kidney and I never remember that she had any problems as a result. I recall the surgeon saying the one good kidney would take over and function efficiently, and it did. My mother lived to age 78. Her kidney was fine when they did the autopsy. I tell you all of this so that you know that a person with one kidney can live a long life; she did and never worried about the situation. I wish you well.
Carol

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Thank you Carol that is reassuring to hear about your mom living with a solitary kidney. It helps me to hear experiences like this. I appreciate your reply!

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@azkidney57

Thank you Carol that is reassuring to hear about your mom living with a solitary kidney. It helps me to hear experiences like this. I appreciate your reply!

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@azkidney57 I am glad I could share this with you. I forgot to tell you that my mom did not die because she had one kidney; she died a natural death. She lived a long life considering what health care was then and what the life span was then. So with all the care we have these days, someone with one kidney could live into their 80's or longer.
Blessings.
Carol

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@retiredteacher

@azkidney57 I am glad I could share this with you. I forgot to tell you that my mom did not die because she had one kidney; she died a natural death. She lived a long life considering what health care was then and what the life span was then. So with all the care we have these days, someone with one kidney could live into their 80's or longer.
Blessings.
Carol

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Thank you. Am 76 so hoping for many more years. Cancer doctor thinks removal of kidney got all of cancer removed but not willing to say re occurance is 0%. Will watch it with Ct scans every six months. Again thank you.

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@haroldpingel1943

Thank you. Am 76 so hoping for many more years. Cancer doctor thinks removal of kidney got all of cancer removed but not willing to say re occurance is 0%. Will watch it with Ct scans every six months. Again thank you.

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That's good news, @haroldpingel1943. Physicians will never say that there is a 0% chance of recurrence. Frankly that's not a promise anyone can make. But it sounds like they got everything. Do you have to have any further treatment? Did they give you any cautions or information about living with one kidney?

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@colleenyoung

That's good news, @haroldpingel1943. Physicians will never say that there is a 0% chance of recurrence. Frankly that's not a promise anyone can make. But it sounds like they got everything. Do you have to have any further treatment? Did they give you any cautions or information about living with one kidney?

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The margins suggest the cancer was all removed with the kidney. Oncologist did not think I needed a bone scan since the CT done on 9-23-2019 on chest shows no issues in lungs. Did not recommend any anti-cancer pills, he said side effects too much pain not knowing if any cancer actually exists. In summary, sure wish there was good technology available to detect early stages of cancer, doc says there is nothing yet, don't know if I want to believe that. Am on mayo clinic discussion group looking for answers.
Harold

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I don't really know what it's like to live with 2 kidneys. I had a nephrectomy at the age of 4 (currently 39). I have lived a very normal healthy life. I do watch my labs closely, every 6 months checking levels. And in the last few years I've had a UPJ obstruction that has caused some havok. I am awaiting a surgery in January at Mayo to repair the ureter. I do notice I tire more easily than others, I just attributed that to my poor diet choices, but it could be the single kidney as well.

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@therberger

I don't really know what it's like to live with 2 kidneys. I had a nephrectomy at the age of 4 (currently 39). I have lived a very normal healthy life. I do watch my labs closely, every 6 months checking levels. And in the last few years I've had a UPJ obstruction that has caused some havok. I am awaiting a surgery in January at Mayo to repair the ureter. I do notice I tire more easily than others, I just attributed that to my poor diet choices, but it could be the single kidney as well.

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@therberger You are literally living proof of living with one kidney. Good for you for keeping tabs with your one kidney. Would you care to share the reason for the nephrectomy at such an early age? What if any precautions were advised by doctors in your growing years? No motocross riding, no contact sports, etc? Has your current medical team made any comment about your tiring more easily?
Ginger

Liked by Lisa Lucier

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