Diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and hardening of the arteries (arteriosclerosis) can damage the heart and kidneys. So if you have heart disease, chances are you have kidney disease and vice versa. Many people do not experience severe symptoms until kidney or heart disease is more advanced, but there are some warning signs. Can you ignore them?
The National Kidney Foundation shares 5 facts that could indicate you’re suffering from kidney or heart disease.
Flat eyes. Take note if your eyes are constantly puffy, especially in the morning. It is associated with kidney and heart disease. Eye swelling is associated with many other conditions, so kidney disease and heart disease are often overlooked.
High blood pressure or high blood pressure. High blood pressure is a leading cause of heart attack, stroke, and chronic kidney disease. Controlling blood pressure by losing excess weight, exercising, not smoking, reducing salt intake, and taking antihypertensive medications can reduce the risk of these complications. High blood pressure or pre-hypertension can also cause kidney damage and should be taken seriously.
Swelling around your extremities. Kidneys filter waste from the blood and remove excess water from the body through urine. When the kidneys are not doing their job, this fluid can stay in the system instead of being excreted. Swelling of hands, feet, and ankles may be associated with kidney or heart failure, so don’t ignore it.
Protein or blood in the urine. A urinalysis or urinalysis is used to detect abnormalities such as excess protein, blood, pus, bacteria, and sugar. Urinalysis can help detect various kidney and urinary tract disorders, including chronic kidney disease, diabetes, bladder infections, and kidney stones. Traces of one type of protein, albumin in the urine (albuminuria), are the first signs of chronic kidney disease. A constant amount of albumin and other proteins in the urine (proteinuria) indicates kidney damage. The presence of albumin is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease and death.
High cholesterol. Cholesterol is a fat-like substance in your blood. Too much cholesterol can build up in the blood vessels, causing them to narrow and become blocked. When there is a blockage in the arteries of the heart, it is called coronary heart disease and can lead to a heart attack. Heart disease is very common in people with chronic kidney disease. Annual cholesterol labs are recommended for people with CKD. If something has changed in your health, your doctor may want to do this more often.