End-stage kidney disease is the complete or almost complete failure of the kidneys to work. The kidneys remove waste and excess water from the body.
End-stage kidney disease (ESRD) is when the kidneys are no longer able to work at a level needed for day-to-day life.
ESRD almost always comes after chronic kidney disease. The kidneys may slowly stop working over 10 - 20 years before end-stage disease results.
Symptoms may include:
Other symptoms may include:
Your health care provider will perform a physical exam and order blood tests. Most people with this condition have high blood pressure.
Patients with end-stage kidney disease will make much less urine, or urine production may stop.
End-stage kidney disease changes the results of many tests. Patients receiving dialysis will need these and other tests done often:
This disease may also change the results of the following tests:
Dialysis or kidney transplantation is the only treatment for this condition.
For more information on these treatments, see:
Your doctor may also put you on medicine to control your blood pressure.
You may need to make changes in your diet.
For more information, see: Diet and chronic kidney disease
Other treatment depends on your symptoms but may include:
You should be up-to-date on important vaccinations, including:
End-stage kidney disease leads to death if you do not have dialysis or a kidney transplant. However, both of these treatments can have risks. The outcome is different for each person.
Treatment of chronic kidney disease may delay or prevent progression to ESRD. Some cases may not be preventable.
Renal failure - end stage; Kidney failure - end stage; ESRD
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Updated by: David Zieve, MD, MHA, Medical Director, A.D.A.M., Inc., andHerbert Y. Lin, MD, PHD, Nephrologist, Massachusetts General Hospital; Associate Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School.
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