Renal failure

Early diagnosis, professional treatment

An important task of the kidneys is to remove water and degradation products from metabolism. In addition, they are involved in regulating blood salts, blood pressure, acidity and blood formation as well as bone metabolism. Many diseases can damage the kidneys. Conversely, kidney diseases can also impair other organ systems. An early diagnosis is crucial for preventing renal failure (renal insufficiency). 

At Schoen Clinic, we are specialised in the treatment of kidney diseases. Our experienced consultants offer you a sound diagnosis and effective treatment for your disease.

Causes & symptoms

What is renal failure?

Renal failure is when the detoxification performance of the kidneys has decreased. This is usually seen through increased laboratory levels of metabolic degradation products, which are normally excreted by the kidneys (for example creatinine and urea). In some cases, renal failure also exists when these values are normal.

A distinction is made between suddenly occurring (acute) and more persistent renal insufficiency (chronic renal insufficiency).

Renal failure – Causes: What are the risk factors?

In addition to hereditary kidney diseases, there are various risk factors that can lead to renal insufficiency:
  • Diabetes (diabetes mellitus)
  • High blood pressure 
  • Medication-induced kidney damage
  • Systemic diseases (e.g. certain rheumatic diseases)
  • Rarer inflammatory kidney disease
  • Urination disorders

Renal failure – Symptoms: These discomforts may occur

Renal insufficiency that develops slowly may remain without symptoms for a long time. On the other hand, a suddenly occurring renal insufficiency can cause discomfort very quickly.

There are hardly any clear symptoms of renal failure. The following signs may indicate renal failure however:
  • Weakness, exhaustion, fatigue
  • Irritability, concentration problems, confusion, epileptic seizures
  • Loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhoea
  • Shortness of breath, oedema (water retention, for example in the legs)
  • Less urine production
  • Arrhythmia
  • Itching, dry skin
  • Bone pain
  • High blood pressure
  • Frothy or bloody urine
  • Anaemia, increased bleeding tendency
  • Increased susceptibility to infection 

Diagnostics

Diagnosis: How we diagnose renal failure

A rapid diagnosis is very important to correctly treat a kidney disease. Our specialists at Schoen Clinic have the appropriate experience and skills to do this. Different departments are often needed during the examinations. That is why, for example, Urology, Rheumatology and Radiology work together closely. If a dialysis treatment is to be initiated we also take advantage of the expertise of a nephrologist (specialist for internal medicine specialising in nephrology).

Our special treatment techniques in nephrology

  • Accurate determination of the detoxification performance of the kidneys (clearance measurement)
  • Urine examination under a special microscope (phase contrast of sediment)
  • Analysis of the protein in the urine (proteinuria diagnostics)
  • Special laboratory tests
  • Evaluation of acidity
  • Evaluation of the salt and fluid balance
  • Ultrasound of the kidneys, possibly with special measurement of renal blood flow (duplex sonography)
  • Tissue extraction from the kidney (kidney biopsy)