Kidney disease is a long-term condition that’s linked to getting older.
It’s caused by too much pressure being put on the kidneys, causing them to malfunction, and not work properly.
High blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol and kidney stones could all lead to the disease.
On rare occasions, the kidneys can actually stop working altogether – like an overheated computer. This is known as kidney failure, or end-stage kidney disease.
“Most people with chronic kidney disease will be able to control their condition with medication and regular check-ups,” the NHS said.
“Chronic kidney disease only progresses to kidney failure in around one in 50 people with the condition.
“But if you have chronic kidney disease, even if it’s mild, you’re at an increased risk of developing other serious problems, such as cardiovascular disease.”
Cardiovascular disease is one of the main causes of death in kidney disease patients. That includes heart attacks and strokes.
Kidneys help to filter out waste products and water from blood. It then converts these products into urine.
They also produce vitamin D, which helps to keep bones strong and healthy, and can help to maintain blood pressure.
There aren’t usually many visible signs of kidney disease early on.
But, you should see your GP if you find blood in your urine – an indication of more advanced kidney disease.
Other symptoms include tiredness, swollen ankles, shortness of breath, and nausea.
urinating more often than normal could also be a sign of the condition. If the urine is darker than normal, looks foamy, or smells bad, you should also see the doctor.
More than three million people have kidney disease in the UK, according to WebMD.
It’s most common in the elderly, with an estimated one in five men, and one in four women, between the ages 65 and 74 having some degree of the condition.
The number of people with the condition was expected to rise over the next 10 years.