Acute Kidney FailureAcute Kidney Failure: Causes, Symptoms, Types, Stages and Treatments

Commonly asked questions about Acute Kidney Failure Disease:

What is Acute Intrinsic Kidney Injury?

Intrinsic acute kidney injury, or AKI, occurs when direct damage to the kidney causes a sudden loss in kidney function. Intrinsic acute renal failure accounts for approximately 40 percent of the cases of acute renal failure. This can also include toxin overload and ischemia (a lack of oxygen in the kidneys). Shock, severe bleeding, and renal blood vessel obstruction can cause acute intrinsic kidney disease to form.

What are the Symptoms for Acute Intrinsic Kidney Disease?

The following symptoms can be applied to any type of kidney disease including prerenal, intrinsic, and postrenal kidney failure and may vary depending on the severity of the disease.

  • Urine output
  • Gradual diminution of urine can possibly indicate urethral stricture
  • Nausea, vomiting
  • Dehydration
  • Confusion

Oliguria or anuria is the failure to produce a normal amount of urine, and is usually accompanied by an AKI, however polyuria, the opposite of Oli and anuria occurs due to reduced fluid reabsorption by damaged renal tubules.

What is the Cause for Acute Kidney Failure?

There is no direct cause for acute kidney failure but can occur when there is:

Impaired blood flow to the kidneys

Diseases and conditions that can slow blood flow to the kidneys and lead to kidney failure include:

  • Blood or fluid loss
  • Blood pressure medications
  • Heart attacks/disease
  • Liver failure
  • Use of aspirin, ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin IB), naproxen (Aleve) or related drugs
  • Severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis)
  • Severe burns and/or dehydration

Damage to the Kidneys

Diseases, conditions, and agents that may damage the kidneys include:

  • Blood clots in veins and arteries surrounding the kidneys
  • Cholesterol deposits that block blood flow in the kidneys
  • Glomerulonephritis (inflammation of the tiny filters in the kidneys) caused by lupus
  • Hemolytic uremic syndrome, a condition resulting from premature destruction of red blood cells
  • Multiple myeloma, a cancer of the plasma cells
  • Scleroderma, rare diseases affecting the skin and connective tissues
  • Toxins, such as alcohol, heavy metals, and cocaine
  • Vasculitis, an inflammation of blood vessels

Urine Blockage in the Kidneys

Diseases and conditions that block the passage of urine out of the body and can lead to acute kidney failure:

  • Bladder cancer
  • Blood clots in the urinary tract
  • Cervical cancer
  • Colon cancer
  • Enlarged prostate
  • Kidney stones

What is the Treatment for Acute Prerenal Kidney Failure?

Maintenance of volume homeostasis and correction of biochemical abnormalities remain the primary sources of treatment and can include:

  • Correction of fluid overload with furosemide
  • Correction of severe acidosis with bicarbonate administration, leading to a bridge in dialysis
  • Correction of hyperkalemia
  • Transfusions and administration of desmopressin or estrogens to correct hematologic abnormalities

What are the Risk Factors of Acute Intrinsic Kidney Injury?

Acute kidney disease mostly occurs along another medical condition or circumstance. Conditions that increase your risk of obtaining acute kidney failure include:

  • Being hospitalized, especially for a serious condition that requires intensive care
  • Advanced age
  • Blockages in blood vessels in arms or legs
  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart failure
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease

How Do I Prevent Acute Kidney Injury?

Although prevention for acute kidney failure does not have direct causes, there are several precautions one can take in order to lessen its risks according to The Kidney Foundation:

  • Quit smoking
  • Minimized or depletion of alcohol
  • Healthy weight/diet
  • Regular exercise

What Drugs are Used to treat Acute Prerenal Kidney Disease?

The following drugs and medications are in some way related to, or used in the treatment of Acute Kidney Disease.

  • Furosemide
  • Bumetanide

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