Five Stages of Kidney Disease

The kidney is a vital organ of the body and needs to be in good condition to function well. The organ helps to filter the blood by removing waste, toxins, and extra fluids. Other functions of the kidney are that they help regulate blood pressure, stimulate the production of red blood cells, and keep the bones healthy.

When there is an issue with your kidney, waste products and fluid start to build up in the body, this can cause other health conditions like swelling in your ankles, nausea [1], poor sleep, and shortness of breath. Without immediate and proper treatment, the damage can get worse and cause more complications. When the damage in your kidney persists for months and does not show any sign of improvement, it is referred to as chronic kidney disease (CKD).

Another term for Chronic kidney disease is chronic renal failure. The word regular in Chronic kidney disease does not necessarily mean serious; the term refers to all abnormalities with the kidney that persists for months. There are five (5) stages of chronic kidney disease, and these stages include even the mildest damage in stage one to the most severe case in stage 5. The stages are based on how well the kidney can perform its function and how much damage has been done.

A blood and urine test is usually carried out to measure your kidney disease and know what stage it is in. The blood test helps gauge the eGFR (estimated glomerular filtration rate) [2], and the urine test shows the ACR (urine albumin: creatinine ratio) [3]. The average normal eGFR is 100 percent.

All five stages of Chronic kidney disease have different symptoms and treatments associated with them. the stages of kidney disease include:

Stage 1 Kidney Disease

In the first stage of kidney disease, the damage is mild. At this stage, one could still live with it and not experience any pain. The eGFR is a minimum rate of 90. At this level of eGFR, the kidneys are still considered healthy and working well, but there may be some minor signs that could be protein in your urine. To help slow down the damage of your kidney at this stage, you should;

  • Maintain a healthy balanced diet
  • Reduce your sugar intake
  • Maintain appropriate body weight
  • Abstain from tobacco use