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signs that define CKD

Chronic kidney disease is called a ‘silent disease’ as there are often no warning signs. It is not uncommon for people to lose up to 90 percent of their kidney function before getting any symptoms.

There are, however, some signs that may indicate reduced kidney function and it’s important to take note of them.

These can include:

  • High blood pressure
  • Changes in the amount and number of times urine is passed
  • Changes in the appearance of your urine (for example, frothy or foaming urine)
  • Blood in your urine
  • Puffiness (in your legs, ankles or around your eyes)
  • Pain in your kidney area
  • Tiredness
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty in sleeping
  • Headaches
  • Itching
  • Breathlessness
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Bad breath and a metallic taste in the mouth
  • Muscle cramps

These symptoms are very general and may be caused by other illnesses. However, if they are related to kidney disease they may gradually worsen as kidney function declines.

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