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Kidneys and their role in keeping the bone strong

Healthy kidneys do important functions for our overall health management. They pull out wastes and excess fluids from the blood, produce red blood cells, keep the bones healthy, get you vitamin D, and control blood pressure. Not to forget that they also keep the right amount of electrolytes and minerals in the blood. Minerals and electrolytes are what your body needs to stay healthy and functional.

But in case your kidney function is not optimal, the chances are high that your blood will pool wastes and fluid. This is not good for your health showing your kidneys are not performing their job well. In response to this, one may experience a series of complications of which bone and mineral disorder is the one. It is common among kidney patients to experience conditions related to bones at the time of low renal functionality.

Let’s understand what mineral and bone disorder actually is:
Mineral and bone disorder occurs when the blood calcium and phosphorus levels are not adequate. This imbalance can affect your bones, heart, and blood vessels in the entire body.

Related: Foods that help with Chronic Kidney Disease

How do kidneys are related to mineral and bone disorders?

In the later stages, your kidney function is not appropriate to keep up with most body functions so it starts to affect phosphorus and calcium levels in the blood. This happens when one consumes a phosphorus-rich diet but kidneys cannot remove these components from the body in the urine. Thus, phosphorus can build up to high levels in the blood.

Another fact is, healthy kidneys also convert vitamin D from the sunlight into a form that can be used by the body for various purposes. As there is a shortage of vitamin D in the body at the time of CKD, this leads to an imbalance in the calcium and phosphorus level in the blood.

In response to the high blood phosphorus level and low vitamin D, the body secretes too much parathyroid hormone. If your body has a significant amount of PTH, it may make the calcium move from bones to the blood leading to “weaker bones” that tend to break easily. Some calcium may also move to the heart through the blood vessels and so likely to increase the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Related: What foods to avoid during Chronic Kidney Disease?

The following signs can be experienced in mineral and bone disorders at the time of kidney failure.

  • Nerve problems
  • Pain in the bones
  • Bones that break easily
  • Blockage in the blood vessels
  • Heart problems
  • Itchy and dry skin
  • Anemia
  • Weak immunity leads to difficulty in fighting off infections

How can bone and mineral disorders be diagnosed?

Your doctor will ask for a blood test to check for phosphorus, calcium, PTH, and vitamin D balance. Additionally, an X-ray is suggested of your abdomen to know if the imbalance has affected your heart and blood vessels.

To diagnose kidney disease, you may be asked to go for a kidney biopsy. A kidney biopsy is done by collecting sample tissue from the kidneys.

Related: Daily phosphorus intake for CKD patients

Treatment of bone and mineral disorder

People with bone and mineral disorder needs treatment to control high blood pressure (in case they have hypertension), phosphorus, or PTH levels. Treating the underlying kidney disease with the help of ayurvedic medicine for kidney disease. After the treatment, when the kidney function returns, too much potassium and calcium come under the normal range.

Diet is also important to control the buildup of potassium and calcium in the blood.

Lower phosphorus diet
Taking a diet low in phosphorus will help to keep the blood phosphorus in the range. Consult a dietician who can suggest ways to restrict dietary phosphorus.

Your healthcare provider may also provide you with phosphate binders and absorption inhibitors to help with the blood phosphorus range.

Vitamin D
The body has its own vitamin D needs. Consult your healthcare team for the right type of vitamin you need.

Calcimimetics are medicines given to patients on dialysis who have increased blood calcium, PTH, and phosphorus levels.

Calcium supplements
If you are taking calcium supplements, your blood calcium level will be higher than normal. Ask your doctor if you should continue with the calcium supplements or not.

If you are one of these with elevated PTH levels, you may be required to take surgery to remove a portion of the parathyroid gland or full of it.


Disclaimer: This information is extracted from the source kidney.org. Please consult your doctor for more information on this. For appointments, call our 24×7 helpline: +91-9871712050 or visit www.karmaayurvedahospital.com.

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