Protect Your Kidneys:

Tips and Strategies for Maintaining Kidney Health

Did you know? People of color are more likely to develop end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and therefore have a greater need for kidney transplants. Despite having a greater need, people of color are less likely to receive kidney transplants. This is due to a variety of factors, including cultural barriers, lack of education about donation, and a shortage of donors from minority communities.

The leading cause of kidney disease in the United States is diabetes. Are you at risk for kidney disease?

Advocate for your health.

Here are 10 things you should know about kidney health and transplantation:

1. Kidneys are vital organs that help remove waste and excess fluids from the body, regulate blood pressure, and produce hormones that are necessary for red blood cell production and bone health.

2. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a condition in which the kidneys gradually lose function over time, and it can eventually lead to kidney failure, also known as end-stage renal disease (ESRD).

3. ESRD requires treatment, such as dialysis or a kidney transplant, to replace the function of the failed kidneys.

4. A kidney transplant is a surgical procedure in which a healthy kidney from a living or deceased donor is transplanted into the recipient’s body to replace the failed kidneys.

5. The success rates of kidney transplantation are generally higher than those of dialysis, and recipients can have a better quality of life with a functioning transplanted kidney.

6. Kidney transplantation is a life-saving process that involves matching the ideal donor and recipient, comprehensive testing, and ongoing medication to ensure the success and longevity of the transplanted organ.

7. Deceased donor kidneys are also an option for transplantation, but there is a shortage of available organs, and the wait time for a deceased donor kidney can be several years.

8. Certain lifestyle factors, such as maintaining a healthy weight, staying active, and avoiding smoking, can help prevent kidney disease and improve overall kidney health.

9. People with kidney disease should work closely with their healthcare team to manage their condition, including monitoring blood pressure and blood sugar levels, taking medications as prescribed, and following a healthy diet and lifestyle.

10. For individuals who may require a kidney transplant, early detection of kidney disease through regular check-ups can increase the chances of successful transplantation.

At LifeCenter, we’re working to increase kidney health among people of color in our community by:

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