Chronic Kidney Disease


What symptoms did you experience with your chronic kidney disease? Submit Your Comment

Comment from: Tod, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: October 27

I have stage 4 chronic kidney disease and for the last couple of days I have had a lot of lower back pain and decreased urination. I am scared that my kidneys are starting to fail. I have a doctor appointment in a few weeks.

Comment from: Jessica, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: June 09

I am 34 years old now, and have had chronic kidney disease (CKD) since I was born. I was born 3 months early and the medications they used to keep me alive damaged my already small kidneys. I had a kidney transplant at 18, and for 14 years I was fine. Now, however, my creatinine is creeping back up to 2.1 (my baseline was 1.01) and my GFR is roughly calculated at 26. I tire easily due to anemia, and I feel sick when eating breakfast and other meals, a symptom I had all through childhood.

Comment from: Auralsage, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: March 10

I have just been diagnosed with stage 3 chronic kidney disease (CKD). I’m only36 years old. But all the warning signs were there for years. I’ve had recurring kidney pains (but no kidney stones) for so long I can’t remember when it began. My ankles have always been “cankles” and I’ve ended up with folliculitis due to the severe itchy rash. I’m always tired.

Comment from: Flaherty 741, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: January 14

I am 45 years old and was diagnosed with stage 3 chronic kidney disease. I have had urinary tract infections and kidney stones for years. I struggle every day with pain and the worst part is the exhaustion. I am on disability but still have to work part time. I feel so alone and I don't want people to know how bad it is on a daily basis. I am scared it's going to end up with me on dialysis.

Comment from: staystrong, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: October 15

I am 72 year old male, and waited until eGFR of 6 before starting dialysis for chronic kidney disease. At that time, I had next to no energy, was delusional, and pretty much out of it. My path from the teens to reading of 6 was a decline marked by doing less and napping more. Best of luck to you.

Comment from: Mam, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 05

I have stage 3 chronic kidney disease. It’s been hurting since last night. Wondering if I should be concerned.

Comment from: Stanhope01, 75 or over Male (Patient) Published: July 30

I am 78 years old, now in stage 5 kidney disease. Symptoms are lethargy, nausea for a short while in the morning, with GFR 11. I have had headaches on and off for some time, had swelling in my lower legs but that went away on its own. My kidney doctor is pushing for me to have surgery to prepare for dialysis. Medicare will pay 80 percent, I am afraid the other 20 percent will break the bank. I also have a history of coronary heart disease and have had stents. What I read is so conflicting and no one can really tell me much either.

Comment from: Clumsydot, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: September 12

With chronic kidney disease I had GFR (glomerular filtration rate) of 13 last time tested. I have anemia and receiving Aranesp shots as needed. I am always exhausted and so very nauseous lately. I want to prolong dialysis as long as possible. I am on a transplant list and that would be preferable to starting dialysis. I need to know how much longer I can wait before giving in to dialysis.

Comment from: Shiney , 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 08

I am 47, and have just been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease. I've actually had the symptoms for years; blood in my urine for over 5 years, muscle weakness and fatigue, neuropathy causing chronic pain for 15 years, cramping muscles, headaches, bone pain, I bruise easily, frequent kidney stones began 20 years ago, swelling in feet, ankles, sudden dark swelling under eyes, difficulty with urine flow, urinate much less often, nausea and vomiting, severe flank pain, and the latest is a sudden loss of 25 lb. It took so long to figure out what has been wrong! Oh yes, concentration is very strained, I get confused daily, lost while driving, and have passed out twice.

Comment from: Jan, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: February 12

I have suffered with kidney stones in my left kidney for 30 odd years, and have had constant infections. I was having 3 or 4 lithotripsy treatments yearly for my chronic kidney disease. I had a CT scan yearly so the urologist knew how many lithotripsy treatments to book. I had one in January 2015 and saw the urologist in February 2015. My left kidney had parenchymal atrophy and had shrunk beyond any function. In my right kidney I had cancer! I lost 2/3rds of my right kidney but he managed to save 1/3rd of the functioning kidney. The lead up to this, I was tired all the time but the infections in the kidney have continued every 4 to 6 weeks and for the past 2 months or so. I am feeling tired all the time and I now feel I am on the slippery slope to dialysis which I am dreading.


Kidney Stones: Symptoms, Causes, and Treatment See Slideshow
Comment from: Durphym, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: October 18

I was diagnosed with two different cancers on my right kidney in 2013. I was 60 at the time. They were removed by surgery, a partial nephrectomy. No chemotherapy and no radiation. A number of checkups post-surgery indicated I was cancer free. Since then I find that I awake multiple times throughout the night, close to every hour on the hour to urinate. When I do, I find the urine to be quite bubbly. Most days I am quite fatigued because of the chronic kidney disease. I am able to function reasonably well. Luckily, I am retired and don't have to keep any particular schedule. To actually get 8 hours of sleep for one night would be incredible.

Comment from: jhe, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 10

I am a 59 year old female and was diagnosed with hereditary nephritis in 1981 (later determined to be Alport syndrome) and have had gradual progression of loss of renal function since then, reaching stage V chronic kidney disease in March 2015. My GFR (glomerular filtration rate) fluctuated between 12 and 13 for a year and a half until March 2017 when it went to 11. Bloodwork in June and July 2017 showed function declining to GFR 10 and 8, respectively, so I think dialysis will be necessary soon. I have done remarkably well to this point, but have recently experienced fatigue, mild anemia, ammonia taste, queasiness, gout in elbows, and am up every hour and a half or two hours to urinate. My serum levels for the following are a bit low: carbon dioxide, hemoglobin, platelets, and MCHC (mean corpuscular hemoglobin concentration). Serum levels for potassium, phosphate, uric acid and chloride are elevated.

Comment from: Hdiablo, 25-34 Female (Patient) Published: February 28

I am a 34 year old female with many symptoms. Most recently I was informed that due to prolonged use of proton pump inhibitors (20 plus years) I may have chronic kidney disease. I am exhausted, suffer from migraines, urinate up to 20 times a day, and 6 to 8 times at night. I have horrible itching fits, dandruff in the skin, nausea in the morning and have lost 16 lb in 3 months, swollen ankles, and distended stomach. I have pain in my back in right side and under right ribs. I have a very hard time keeping warm as well, and have many days where it is hard to concentrate or remember things.

Comment from: ladydi777, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: November 24

Since being diagnosed with chronic kidney disease I have had a variety of symptoms, lower backache, fatigue, sudsy urine, depression, and tired all over especially if I have walked too much. The depression and fear are the worst things as I don’t' know what the future holds for me with this disease that was caused from high blood pressure. Sometimes I just want to be alone because I cannot do the things I used to do. My urine is sometimes a gold color and it is always there so I get feeling sad.

Comment from: Lady Di 777, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: July 22

I am a 67 year old female, always physically active. About a year or so ago I was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease, and it has turned parts of my life upside down. Fatigue is the major issue, but also my stamina for walking; I used to walk a mile a day and thought nothing of it but now even walking short distances tire me out terribly. I try to follow a kidney diet whenever possible, however, finances do not always afford me that option. I fear that I will get more and more tired and lose my physical abilities. So far, it has only affected one kidney, and I am in stage 3, but some days I feel utterly hopeless. Good luck to anyone with this disease, as it has really knocked the starch out of me.

Comment from: garyw, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: January 14

Like most, my GFR is 52. I have had chronic kidney disease (CKD) from 2013. I only sleep 1 to 3 hours. Sometimes thought had prostate problems, but it is my CKD; seems like I have lost the energy I used to have.

Comment from: Olivia007, 65-74 Female (Caregiver) Published: January 14

My husband is 68 years old and we just found out his GFR was 49 in October. Last week, 3 months later he took another blood test and it was 36, it went from 49 to 36 in three months! Wonder if that is normal. Creatine level is high, BUN level high, low red blood cells, and glucose high. We are to see the nephrologist in a week but last visit he wasn't too concerned. I’m scared, I lost my mom to kidney failure.

Comment from: kisersassy , 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 30

I haven’t been diagnosed with chronic kidney disease yet, but over the past 2 years my GFR (glomerular filtration rate) has been below 60. Last was 54. I am short of breath, I do not itch but feel like restless legs all over my body. Sometimes I cannot think straight and have terrible flank pain. My renal pelvises are outside of my kidneys and last year I had surgery for a ureteric kidney obstruction where they placed a stent. I had numerous urinary tract infections. I am sitting here researching now whether to go to the emergency room or not as the pain is horrendous. Also in the past few days nausea has sat in. The only thing so far is my appetite has not changed. I have had on occasion urine that looked tea color but lately it is normal in color.


The only purpose of the kidneys is to filter blood. See Answer
Comment from: Bibien, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 21

I was diagnosed with CKD in 2002, at the age of 31. I have been following a renal diet since then with slipping off occasionally due to craving. In 2009, as my creatinine went up to 3.5, my nephrologist put me on a 6-month steroid therapy, which showed me what hell is. It went up to 6 after that and naturally dialysis was advised. I refused and went to a homeopathy doctor. For the last 14 months, I have been following his treatment and my creatinine is maintained around 3. He has cured my recurrent abscesses also.

Comment from: lynda green, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: August 11

I have been diagnosed with CKD stage 3, with a GFR of 51. I am tired, (almost all of the time) have joint pain, slight swelling in the ankles and fingers, and generally feel unwell. During the night time, I experience itching and frequent micturation (needing the toilet approx 6 times in the night) I am also very thirsty. I have had kidney problems (many infections) since childhood and it was never fully investigated, about 5 years ago I had my urethra stretched because it was very narrow causing me unable to pass urine.

Comment from: Kay, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: February 11

My legs and feet are bloated with water.

Comment from: Frances, age 55, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: November 30

I took chemo for lung cancer. Because of the chemo, I now have CKD stage 2. I am so tired all the time. My bones and joints ache. I am not diabetic, but I stay thirsty all the time. I am up four or five times every night to use the bathroom. All of this is at stage 2. I am not looking forward to next stages. I see a nephrologist and an oncologist on regular basis. Be kind to people. It seems like everyone is fighting some kind of battle.

Comment from: January11471, 35-44 Female (Patient) Published: October 30

I am 42 years old. I found out from routine blood work that I had CKD about two years ago. My doctor didn't say anything to me he just sent the blood work results in the mail with my bill. My kidney areas hurt constantly sometimes unbearably. I am constantly thirsty. I constantly have the urge to urinate, which is annoying especially when at work and have to wait for someone to break me. And getting up every few hours during the night is absolutely unbearable.

Comment from: Sy, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: September 10

Dark, foamy urine, lower back pain and tired most of the time, sleeplessness. Weight loss and generally poor appetite. Waiting for biopsy results as I'm showing signs of kidney failure. I am 42 and have numbness in both feet.

Comment from: cocoa47, 65-74 Male (Patient) Published: September 10

I am 65 years old, I developed high blood pressure when I was about 45 or 46. Then at age 59 I was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis, and in the beginning I was taking a lot of ibupofen and tylenol. After some time I had a physical and was told my kidneys were border line. I was told to have an ultra sound on my kidneys and the result was that I had chronic kidney disease with no obstruction. As of today I made an appointment with a kidney doctor and was told he was the best in my area, but I can not get an appointment with this doctor until October, 2012.

Comment from: Jamie, 35-44 Male (Patient) Published: June 19

I ended up in emergency with severe stomach pain and back pain, nausea, fever, numbness and swelling, dizziness as well as foamy urine. They admitted me in hospital for four days due to dehydration, stomach infection and both kidneys were infected and with my left kidney was not functioning. Since then I have had three surgeries. Soon, I will have my left kidney removed.

Comment from: Mansour, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: May 30

I was diagnosed with stage 3 CKD last year. Associated symptoms were hypertension, edema, anemia, fatigue, breathlessness, tiredness, lack of stamina, skin rash, acidic taste in mouth, discolored skin and rapid heartbeat. All this has now changed.

Comment from: vanessa, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: May 11

I have swelling in my legs and abdomen. It looks like I’m nine months pregnant. I am not pregnant, but my kidneys hurt. I’m excessively tired.

Comment from: Patricia, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: April 17

I had no symptoms. I was diagnosed with kidney disease when I became pregnant. The doctor said many women loose protein in their urine while pregnant. I did not. Biopsy showed that my kidneys were damaged. My kidneys were so hard it was very hard to get a piece of my kidney but what they did get, there were two diagnoses: 1. I had kidney disease way before I was pregnant 2. I was born with kidney disease, since I was born prematurely and my mom was 42 years old. I was able to keep myself from dialysis with a low protein, low liquid intake, and a no potassium diet. This lasted for almost 10 years then dialysis came. I would not wish this on my worst enemy. Six months later I received a kidney, which I have had for 25 YEARS!

Comment from: britisher, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: April 13

I experienced loss of appetite, nausea and shivering, especially at night. I also felt chilled most of the time. I also had a bladder infection and had trouble with control. This has now cleared up with antibiotics.

Comment from: Liz, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: March 26

I was diagnosed with stage 3 CKD. I am tired all the time. I am sick to my stomach, and I have joint pain, headaches and a horrible metal taste in my mouth. I am awaiting a diagnosis of lupus to see if that is what is causing my kidney failure. It's hard waiting. My doctor says if I do have lupus they can treat that and it will stop my CKD.

Comment from: Pepe, 55-64 Male (Patient) Published: February 21

With chronic kidney disease, I had unusually sudsy urine!

Comment from: aajelf, 7-12 Female (Caregiver) Published: December 27

My little cousin is at the stage 5 of CKD. She is going for regular dialysis and doctors are suggesting a kidney transplant.

Comment from: habeeb, 19-24 Male (Patient) Published: December 02

Swelling face, stomach and legs were my symptoms with CKD.

Comment from: Patty G, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: October 31

I was diagnosed with ESRD in 2002. They found I had only one kidney and it was small and had just worn out. I tried to control with renal diet I was already Stage 4 when diagnosed. In December of that year I was put on dialysis overnight with a surgical implant of a catheter port the same day and dialysis the next morning in the hospital.

Comment from: miller, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: October 18

I have CKD, stage III. I have only one kidney on the left side. The other kidney died about nine years ago due to a stone inside it. I’m tired all the time. I have trouble sleeping and I have leg pain. I’m also very thirsty and I have trouble remembering things.

Comment from: Victory, Published: October 17

I am a 47 year old woman who had stage 5 renal failure and I have just about dealt with every bad symptom that kidney disease has to offer.

Comment from: pieterick3, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: September 06

With my CKD, I had constant lower back pain on the right side.

Comment from: Dorothy, 75 or over Female (Patient) Published: September 02

I had a kidney removed last August due to a tumor (cancer). I am in remission and was told it had not spread out of that kidney. I was in my 50's when I had to start taking blood pressure medicine. It has been controled and I have been taking exercise lessons for many years. I am not overweight and had no other medical problems. I am 79 now and still exercising. I have no symptoms I can feel but have been told I have stage 4 kidney disease.I have not been put on any medicine for this. I only take the blood pressure medicine and an iron pill (over the counter). I do not understand what I should do at this point.

Comment from: Linda Lee, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: August 30

I was diagnosed with CKD about six years ago and am in Stage 4 and the low end and looks like dialysis is on the horizon. I have all the symptoms t and I also had my urethra enlarged about 20 years ago.

Comment from: cotton, 65-74 Female (Patient) Published: August 01

With my CKD, I have excessive bleeding in my urine, with some clots.

Comment from: 75 or over Female (Caregiver) Published: May 16

My mom is 79 is stage 5 kidney failure she refuses to start dialysis. 4.6 count . I feel helpless and don't know what to do to help or what to expect.

Comment from: Alami Musafir, 45-54 Male (Caregiver) Published: May 16

Very good explanations but omits the most important point: what is kidney disease, ie is it clogging of the nephrons, is it necrosis of parts of the kidney etc.

Comment from: evlyn, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 03

Hi I am a 52yrs old I have diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure, I also have chronic pain in my back so I take pain medicine. Well my question is I went to my doctor and had blood work done and the results said my kidneys were a little low can you tell me what that means i am afraid because my mom had diabetes and was on dialysis.

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