Diabetic Nephropathy, Causes, Management, Symptoms and Treatment


 Diabetes, also known as diabetes mellitus is a condition where your body cannot use the normal amount of insulin, or that your body cannot produce the amount of insulin that you need. Since insulin is the hormone responsible for regulating your blood sugar, without enough insulin your blood sugar level is likely to increase. If you are suffering from diabetes your blood vessels are likely injured, hence your kidneys will not be able to flush out your system effectively. Your system will retain more salt and water which can lead to ankle swelling and weight gain thereby resulting in a condition known as diabetic nephropathy.

Waste products can concentrate in your blood and you can also have protein in your urine. Diabetes may also damage your nerves. Once your nerves have been damaged, you will experience a lot of difficulties passing urine. The buildup in your bladder may end injuring your kidneys. If urine is retained in your system for too long, you can easily catch an infection. According to some studies, up to 30% of those who have type 1 diabetes and 40% of those who suffer from type 2 diabetes may eventually suffer from kidney disease.

Symptoms of kidney disease caused by diabetes

One of the earliest signs of kidney disease brought about diabetes is the increased excretion of proteins. This is usually present long before any tests have been done. Thus, you need to do a test yearly. You may also experience ankle swelling and weight gain. You will frequent the bathroom at night and your blood pressure may get high. If you are suffering from diabetes, you need to have your urine, blood, and blood pressure checked at least once a year. By doing so you will not only be able to control the disease but may also help your high blood pressure. By maintaining control of your condition, you can greatly lower your risk.

As your kidneys continue to fail, the level of creatinine in your blood and your blood urea will rise. You may also start experiencing nausea, loss of appetite, fatigue weakness, itching, anemia, and muscle cramps. If you experience any of these symptoms, you need to call a doctor.



What you should do to protect your kidneys

First, you need to see a doctor check whether the injury has been caused by diabetes. Once you’ve confirmed this, you need to take care of your kidneys by

· Controlling your blood pressure.

· Controlling your diabetes.

· Seeking treatment for any UTI

· Treating any problem in your urinary system.

· Do a lot of exercises.

· Control your drinking and smoking.

· Avoiding any medicine that might damage your kidneys.




Maintaining blood sugar levels and lowering blood pressure are some of the best ways of slowing down the progression. Apart from this, you can also use special drugs known as enzyme inhibitors, if prescribed by your doctor. Remember, if not treated in time the kidneys may continue to fail and larger amounts of proteins will be seen in urine. Advanced treatment of the disease may require a kidney transplant or dialysis.



*The author of this blog is not a medical professional and this article does not contain professional medical advice. This blog is not intended to substitute for medical advice, treatment, or diagnosis. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of the contents of this article. If you think you may have a medical emergency, call 911 immediately.