Nephrology is a branch of internal medicine which deals with the function of the kidneys and their dysfunctions. The most important function of the kidaneys is to excrete wastes, ions and fluid from the body, thus maintaining the ideal acid-base and ionic homeostasis. The kidneys are involved in regulating blood pressure and the cardiovascular system by maintaining ideal water homeostasis. The kidneys play a key role in healthy haematopoiesis and bone metabolism through renal hormones.
When should you consult a nephrologist?
- if your eGFR is less than 60 mL / min and your kidney function is impaired
- when there is a risk of an acute or chronic kidney disease (laboratory test required)
- if your urine contains blood and / or protein
- in case of diabetes, hypertension, cardiac, hepatic and haematological diseases, atherosclerosis, long-term medication with analgesics, or if recommended by your healthcare professional
- for the assessment of recurrent urinary tract infections, renal pelvis inflammation, and oedema formation
- in case of certain immunological (e.g. rheumatoid arthritis, SLE, etc.) and endocrinological diseases
- hereditary renal diseases (e.g. polycystic kidney disease), or developmental disorders (e.g. horseshoe kidney, solitary kidney).
- diseases of the urinary tract and anatomical abnormalities which can lead to kidney disease – in those cases, it is inevitable to consult a urologist or a gynaecologist.
Following the diagnosis of a kidney disease, regular care is required, as certain conditions may require therapy for renal failure or dialysis. In addition, the administration of medications and the follow-up of comorbidities requires specialist expertise to reduce the rate of deterioration of kidney functions, and to avoid side effects and further complications. During the care of patients with renal diseases, if necessary, we provide counselling on choosing the right type of kidney replacement treatment option, haemodialysis, abdominal dialysis and kidney transplantation, and refer patients to the appropriate specialised institution. For patients receiving kidney replacement therapy, we help to adjust their medication and diet, and in the treatment of other comorbidities.