Kidneys: The Facts

What do kidneys do?

  • They remove toxins, excess water and waste products.
  • Kidneys play a vital role in regulating your blood pressure.
  • They activate vitamin D to help keep your bones and muscles in good shape.
  • They’re essential for a healthy body.

Why you shouldn’t ignore your kidneys

Most of the time, kidneys work normally without any issues but sometimes they can be damaged or stop working so well. This is known as chronic kidney disease. CKD is a serious condition that affects over three million people in the UK and up to a million of these people may be undiagnosed. Find out how you can improve your kidney health

Early diagnosis and treatment, as well as changes to your diet and lifestyle, are vital and can often help slow down or prevent any further damage. However, if CKD goes undetected or is not managed well, it can progress to kidney failure, which is fatal without treatment. Patients with kidney failure will need regular dialysis or a kidney transplant.

Some other types of kidney disease, including inherited conditions, are not preventable but can be managed.

The BIG impact on your life

Having kidney disease affects more than your physical health. It also impacts your social life, relationships and emotional wellbeing. Imagine visiting the hospital three times a week for a four-hour dialysis session – how would you fit this around work, or looking after children, or going on holiday?

Kidney disease can’t be ignored. Kidneys Matter.

Are you at risk?

Although anyone can develop kidney disease, here are some factors that can increase your risk:

  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Heart and circulatory disease
  • Family history of kidney disease
  • A black, Asian or minority ethnic background could mean an increased risk of developing kidney failure more quickly.