Page 8 - beaumont_book_5
P. 8


        There are two very simple tests that your doctor can do to determine if your kidney function
        is normal. These include a urine test and a blood test.

                     URINE TESTING – to check for leaking of protein through the kidneys

         Testing for leaking of protein through the kidneys      If protein is detected in your urine your doctor
         (called proteinuria) is a very simple way to         will organise further testing to see if it is due to
         diagnose early kidney disease                        kidney disease.
            Leaking of protein (or albumin) into the urine       Not everyone with proteinuria will notice
         can be the very first sign of CKD – the kidneys      symptoms of it but if there are large amounts of
         filtering system breaks down and proteins escape     protein in your urine, it may cause it to look foamy
         into the urine.                                      in the toilet. The loss of protein from your body
            Too much protein in the urine is called           can also mean that your body is not able to soak
         proteinuria. The detection for this consists of a    up enough fluid. This can result in swelling in your
         cardboard dipstick tester that is                    hands, feet, abdomen or face.
         put into a sample of urine.                                                   A doctor may ask you to
         The dipstick tester only                                    Dipstick urine test  collect your urine over a
         becomes positive when the                                                   24 hour period. You will
         amount of proteins, mainly                                                  be given a large plastic
         albumin, reaches two to four                                                container for this purpose.
         times the levels normally                                                   The urine will be tested
         found in urine. Testing for                                                 to calculate your kidney
         albuminuria is commonly                                                     function. This test is not
         conducted in patients with                                                  used as often these days.

                              BLOOD TESTING - Serum Creatinine and eGFR

        When your kidneys do not function properly, waste     to 30% of normal. You should be aware
        products build up in the blood which can be easily    of your percentage kidney function
        measured. One of these waste products is called       during your care. Always ask your doctor
        creatinine and a simple blood test can be conducted   for your results of test, especially creatinine and
        to measure this. If the creatinine level is high, it  GFR, so you are aware of your percentage kidney
        may indicate that you have CKD.                       function.
           Using the creatinine test results, your doctor can    The formula for estimating the GFR is calculated
        estimate your percent kidney function using a         from the creatinine in the blood along with your
        formula called the estimated glomerular filtration    age and gender. It is a very accurate measure
        rate (GFR). Most blood test laboratories in Ireland   for most patients. Depending on the percentage
        can now provide the actual percentage kidney          of kidney function, CKD is classified into five
        function for each patient. If your percent kidney     stages: Stage 1 to 5.
        function (or GFR) is 100 then you have normal
        kidney function (100% function). Whereas if your      Measurements for these stages can be found
        GFR is 30, then your kidney function is reduced       on page 5 of this book.

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