Health crisis: Millions in America have kidney disease

CSRA (WFXG) - Chronic kidney disease is a worldwide health crisis in which some 3.5 million Americans are affected by some form.

 Kidney disease is when a person's kidney becomes damaged and cannot filter blood the way it should; this could cause waste to build up in the body.
Doctor Nadeem Afzal at Doctors Hospital says there is a reason why so many have kidney disease. "We are becoming bigger and bigger, that is one reason." 
Those who are overweight and not living a healthy lifestyle have a higher chance of diabetes and hypertension which are two major causes of kidney disease. Diabetes and hypertension can be controlled, but many fail to do so by not changing their diet and not taking their medication.
Kidney disease is the highest among African Americans, Doctor Afzal says there are reasons for this."People talk about genetics as well as access to health care and social economic background -- all of these things contribute to kidney disease."
There are stages of kidney disease but the end stage is most severe.

"Their life changes a lot when they become end-stage, which means when they are on dialysis. But even before that, their blood pressure will be out of control, if they are diabetic they will have problems with diabetes, the other symptoms are they are tired. Kidney disease affects the hemoglobin level and they become more anemic,"  explains Doctor Afzal.

The only way to know if you have kidney disease is by seeing your physician for blood tests.

"Kidney disease can be considered a silent killer actually. You might not have any symptoms until you are about to start the dialysis, that is the tricky part."

Doctor Afzal suggests those who are a part of the high-risk groups, to invest in a blood pressure cuff and check their blood pressure every two weeks. If they notice their blood pressure is high, then they need to speak to a doctor.

Copyright 2018 WFXG. All rights reserved.