Looking after your kidney health during your pregnancy
With this year’s World Kidney Day theme focusing on women’s health and in particular, their kidney health, the campaign is drawing attention to the need for a higher awareness, timely diagnosis and proper follow-up of kidney issues amongst women.
One key area being highlighted by the campaign is the close links between pregnancy and kidney health problems. The two are intrinsically connected – with CKD considered a high-risk factor for problematic pregnancies and reduced fertility, and in turn, pregnancy-related complications, including preeclampsia, can increase the risk of kidney disease.
Although not commonly known, women who have Chronic Kidney Disease are at increased risk of hypertensive disorders and premature births – which can be devastating for all involved.
Women with Chronic Kidney Disease who become pregnant also usually have mild kidney dysfunction, the severity of which will depend on the stage the CKD is at.
It is clear therefore that there is a need for increased awareness of Chronic Kidney Disease in pregnancy, to timely identify its existence before conception, and to monitor its progress before, during and after birth.
With a comprehensive panel of kidney health tests, Randox are working to ensure timely diagnosis of kidney function problems, to ensure that necessary treatment is administered at the earliest possible stage, when it is most likely to be successful.
Pregnant women, or women hoping to get pregnant in the future, can therefore determine their kidney health and be empowered to embark upon the necessary lifestyle changes or treatment required to ensure a safe and healthy pregnancy.
For example, the Randox test for albumin, low concentrations of which are the earliest marker of kidney damage, can identify individuals with diabetic nephropathy (damage to the kidneys caused by diabetes) around 10 years earlier than standard protein tests. The Randox albumin test can therefore enable preventative measures to be taken to reduce your risk of developing kidney disease.
In addition to albumin, there are a number of other highly specific and sensitive tests for kidney health, which are available as part of a Randox Health Check at our Randox Health Clinics. These include;
- Estimated Glomerular Filtration Rate, which is an equation that considers age, gender, blood and protein levels to determine how well the kidneys are functioning.
- Creatinine, which is a waste product produced by muscle tissue, and removed by the kidneys. When kidney function is diminished, creatinine levels increase.
- Other proteins within the body which should be filtered by the kidneys, and are therefore measured to determine kidney function, include;
– Cystatin C
– Microalbumin, which is not usually found in urine, but can appear when normal kidney function is impaired.
- Minerals processed by the kidneys and analysed by Randox Health include;
Both World Kidney Day and Randox are working towards improving healthcare worldwide. With access to these high-performance kidney health tests, expectant mothers with kidney problems can be diagnosed early, before the condition develops into something more serious – keeping both you, and your baby healthy.
With early diagnosis we can improve patient treatment outcomes and reduce the number of people across the world suffering with kidney health problems.
If you want to find out the status of your own Kidney Health, book a health check with Randox Health today. Speak to our team by phoning 0800 2545 130.