Download Living with Kidney Disease PDF

TitleLiving with Kidney Disease
File Size667.3 KB
Total Pages96
Table of Contents
A note on kidney words
	Chapter 1: Chronic kidney disease  
in New Zealand
	Chapter 2: Your kidneys
What your kidneys do and how do they work
When your kidneys don’t work properly
How do I know if I have kidney disease?
Measuring how your kidneys work – the eGFR
Chronic kidney disease doesn’t always lead to end-stage kidney disease
Types of kidney disease
	Acute kidney injury
	Chronic kidney disease
	End-stage kidney disease
Prevention of kidney disease
	Chapter 3: Chronic kidney disease
Signs and symptoms
Blood tests
	Urea and creatinine
Diseases that cause the kidneys to fail
	High blood pressure
	Glomerulonephritis or nephritis
	Polycystic kidney disease
	Reflux nephropathy
	Vascular conditions
	Chapter 4: Treatment options
What can I do to help myself?
Treatment choices
Delaying progression through diet
	Blood pressure drugs or anti-hypertensives
	Iron replacement therapy
	Phosphate binders
	Vitamins and minerals
	Cholesterol-lowering drugs
	Treatments for itching
	Alternative therapies
Peritoneal dialysis
	Access for dialysis
	Choosing a type of dialysis
Difference between the two forms of dialysis
	Peritoneal dialysis
Kidney transplantation
	Types of transplant and donors
	Who can have a kidney transplant?
	Live donor transplants
	Advantages and disadvantages
	The transplant waiting list
	How does the transplant waiting list work?
	The transplant operation
	After the transplant
	Anti-rejection medications
	Caring for yourself after the transplant
Choosing not to start dialysis (conservative treatment)
	What is conservative treatment?
	Why might I decide not to have dialysis treatment?
	What does conservative treatment involve?
	What if I can’t decide?
	How long will I live if I don’t have dialysis?
	Will I have a choice of where I die?
	Is deciding not to have dialysis suicide?
	Chapter 5: Nutrition and 
kidney failure
Why is what I eat so important?
Sodium (salt)
How much should I drink?
Carbohydrates and fats
What if I have diabetes?
What if I am a vegetarian?
Will I have to take vitamins and minerals?
Other points to remember
Smoking and alcohol
Nutrition after a kidney transplant
	Chapter 6: Living with kidney failure – information and tips for patients, family members, friends and carers
Living with change
	Adjusting to kidney failure
	Who can I talk to?
	How do people react when they learn they have end-stage kidney disease?
Lifestyle changes
	Leisure time
	Fitness and exercise
	Sexual function
Getting support
	Some suggestions to help you manage
	Your kidney team
	Where else can I find support?
	For family members, friends and carers
	Chapter 7: Dealing with your 
kidney care team
Making the most of your visits
	Chapter 8: Financial assistance
Applying for a benefit
Income and asset tests
What benefits are available?
	Sickness benefit
	Invalid’s benefit
	Disability allowance
Extra assistance
Where do I start?
	Getting the information you need
Visiting WINZ
Filling out the forms
Subsidy cards and other assistance for health care
	Community Services Card
	High Use Health Card
	Pharmaceutical Subsidy Card
Additional help for renal patients
	Chapter 9: Resources, contacts 
and support
Kidney Health New Zealand
Useful websites
	Appendix 1: 
Survival of people on dialysis
	Appendix 2: 
Facts and figures about dialysis
Document Text Contents
Page 1

Living with Kidney Disease
A comprehensive guide
for coping with
chronic kidney disease

Second edition
Revised and reprinted December 2014

Page 2

Citation: Ministry of Health and Kidney Health
New Zealand. 2014. Living with Kidney Disease:

A comprehensive guide for coping with
chronic kidney disease. Second edition.

Wellington: Ministry of Health.

Published in December 2014 by the Ministry of Health
PO Box 5013, Wellington 6145, New Zealand

ISBN 978-0-478-44466-7 (print)
ISBN 978-0-478-44467-4 (online)

HP 6098

This document is available at:

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of skin cancer, make sure you avoid prolonged exposure to the sun, and
remember to wear a hat, long sleeves and a high-protection sunscreen
when you are outdoors.

Women should be aware of the increased risk of breast cancer and
cancers of the reproductive tract after transplant surgery, and have
regular mammograms and cervical smears. Men also have a higher
likelihood of developing cancers.

Weight gain following a transplant is not uncommon – if this is the
case for you, try to return to a normal healthy weight when your body
has stabilised by eating a healthy diet and participating in light regular
exercise. Do not smoke. The dangers of smoking, particularly the risk of
lung cancer, are increased after a transplant by the anti-rejection drugs.
Smoking may damage the transplanted kidney and reduce its chances
of long-term success.

As for any major surgery, normal sexual activity can be resumed
4–6 weeks after the transplant. Reliable contraception is
recommended. Dialysis patients often notice that sexual function
improves after a transplant. Pregnancy is not advised for 18–24 months
after a woman receives a transplant, until the body is stable and good
kidney function is assured. Careful medical supervision is necessary
for pregnant women who have had a transplant; in particular,
health professionals will monitor blood pressure and be aware of
the possibility of premature labour. Seek medical advice if you are
considering pregnancy following a transplant.

If you need treatment from other health professionals, such as dentists,
advise them that you have had a kidney transplant. Speak to your
transplant physician before taking any prescription or over-the-counter
medication prescribed by another health professional, to ensure it does
not conflict with your anti-rejection medications.

Your goal following a transplant is to lead a normal life. By simply
following your doctor’s advice and leading a healthy lifestyle you will
give your transplant the best possible chance of long-term success.

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Choosing not to start dialysis (conservative treatment)
You have the right to make your own choices about how you are treated
for ESKD. That means you can choose not to start dialysis or have a
transplant. Some people decide to have ‘conservative’ treatment (also
called palliative or supportive care) instead. Perhaps as many as half of
all patients with ESKD never start dialysis.

You have the right to decide not to start dialysis if you feel that the
burden would outweigh the benefits and reduce your quality of life.
You also have the right to stop dialysis at any time after starting
dialysis. Only you know what it is like for you to live with ESKD. It
is very important that you have plenty of time to discuss the issue
thoroughly with those close to you and with members of the kidney
team looking after you. The team will ensure that you receive the
necessary information to make a good decision, and will support you.

Here are some facts to consider.

• People with ESKD will eventually die of the condition if they don’t
have treatment with dialysis or a kidney transplant.

• Dialysis treatment can greatly improve the quality of life of many
people with ESKD.

• However, dialysis treatment is demanding and time-consuming, and
requires lasting changes to lifestyle.

• Many people on dialysis are able to make these adjustments and still
lead a fulfilling life, but dialysis is not a cure-all.

• In some cases, dialysis may not improve quality of life, particularly if
a person has other serious health problems, such as heart disease or

What is conservative treatment?
The aim of conservative treatment is to manage the symptoms of
kidney failure without using dialysis or transplantation. Conservative
treatment includes medical, emotional, social, spiritual and practical
care for both the person with ESKD and their family/whānau. Although
many people who choose conservative treatment are older, old age is
not the only reason to choose this option.

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Reflux nephropathy Kidney scarring associated with
vesicoureteric reflux

Satellite dialysis Dialysis that takes place in a unit
separate from the hospital

Sodium A mineral in the body fluids that is
regulated by the kidneys and affects
the level of water retained in the body

Stroke Damage to the brain caused by a
blockage of, or a haemorrhage from, an

Tissue Cells of a particular type massed
together; for example, blood or nerves

Transplant The act of transferring an organ or a
portion of tissue from one person to

Ultrasound scan A painless test that uses sound waves to
create images of organs and structures
inside the body

Urea A waste product from the breakdown of

Ureter A muscular tube that propels urine
from the kidneys to the urinary bladder

Urinary tract infection

A bacterial infection that affects a part
of the urinary tract

Urology The branch of medicine dealing with
the urinary system in females and the
genito-urinary system in males

Vein A blood vessel returning blood to the

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(or vesicoureteral) reflux

A condition in which urine flows from
the bladder back up the ureter and back
into the kidneys

Vitamin D A fat-soluble chemical that is activated
naturally in the body on exposure to

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