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4 Signs You May Have Nephrotic Syndrome

4 Signs You May Have Nephrotic Syndrome

The kidneys are vital to the body, filtering fluids and removing wastes from the blood to keep you healthy. However, many conditions affect the kidneys and cause them to not work properly.

Nephrotic syndrome is one of the many conditions that plague the kidneys. It happens when too much protein goes through the kidneys and comes out during urination. Nephrotic syndrome can lead to serious health complications without treatment.

Knowing the signs of nephrotic syndrome is the best way to determine when to seek treatment for dangerous symptoms. Metro Renal Associates in Washington, D.C., and Capitol Heights, Maryland, are experts in kidney issues and provide fast evaluation and customized treatments.

Our team includes three board-certified nephrologists who help you get treatment for nephrotic syndrome to improve your kidney health and overall well-being.

What is nephrotic syndrome?

Nephrotic syndrome is one of the many conditions that affect kidneys. Normally, kidneys work by filtering fluids and wastes out of the blood and into urine to keep the body healthy and functioning.

When you have nephrotic syndrome, the glomeruli in the kidneys don't function well, which allows proteins (more than three grams) to make it into your urine. The glomeruli are small vessels that work to remove waste from your blood.

Diseases that affect your kidneys are often the cause of damaged glomeruli. Some of the primary kidney diseases that may lead to nephrotic syndrome may include:

  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Amyloidosis
  • Lupus
  • Membranous nephropathy
  • Focal segmental glomerulosclerosis
  • Minimal change disease

Any of these issues may lead to swelling and damage to the kidneys' glomeruli. Damaged glomeruli are the main source of nephrotic syndrome, which leads to various uncomfortable symptoms.

Four signs of nephrotic syndrome

The telltale sign of nephrotic syndrome is large amounts of protein in the urine – but you can't see that with the naked eye. There are other signs and symptoms of nephrotic syndrome that are more obvious, and they include:

1. Foamy urine

If you have nephrotic syndrome, you may notice your pee is incredibly bubbly or foamy all of the time. This happens due to the increase in protein in the urine.

2. Weight gain

When you have damaged glomeruli, they can't filter out wastes and urine as they should, which could lead to weight gain. The most common cause of weight gain with nephrotic syndrome is fluid retention.

3. Swelling

Another common sign of nephrotic syndrome is swelling, or edema,  in the body. You may notice swelling around the eyelids, abdomen, legs, and ankles, which can be severe and debilitating.

4. Appetite loss

Fluid retention and waste products in the blood sometimes lead to appetite loss in people with nephrotic syndrome. Another common sign is extreme fatigue and tiredness.

Next steps in treatment

If you notice any of the signs of nephrotic syndrome, it's essential to seek help right away to avoid complications. Untreated nephrotic syndrome may lead to serious health problems and further kidney damage.

When you suspect nephrotic syndrome, our team asks about your health history and symptoms. They may then order the following tests to find out if you have kidney problems:

Urinalysis

A urinalysis is the most accurate and noninvasive test for looking for protein in the urine. If we find protein in the urine, we may order more testing to determine if nephrotic syndrome is the culprit.

Blood test

Blood tests can show our team if your kidneys are working properly to filter wastes from the body. Certain levels of waste products tell our team there is an issue with your kidneys.

Kidney biopsy

A kidney biopsy is an invasive test that allows our team to see parts of the kidney to determine if there's damage to the glomeruli. It helps them determine if nephrotic syndrome is the cause of your symptoms.

If you have nephrotic syndrome, our team offers various treatments to restore your kidney health. They provide medications and treatments for underlying conditions to treat the problem and avoid dangerous complications.

If you're experiencing signs of nephrotic syndrome, don't hesitate to call Metro Renal Associates today for an appointment or request a consultation using the online booking tool.





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