Acute kidney failure

If the kidneys are impaired, they can no longer remove waste and toxic substances from the body. In addition, the acid-base balance and blood pressure can get out of balance.

The functions of the kidneys are manifold and essential for health and well-being. They filter our bloodstream several times a day and ensure that waste products such as urea and residues of medication are removed. They also regulate blood pressure, blood salt content and the acid-base balance. Moreover, the kidneys produce enzymes, hormones and active vitamin D3 for bone formation.

Acute kidney failure
Symptoms

Acute renal failure occurs when renal function is interrupted for hours or days. Often the kidneys suddenly stop producing urine, but an acute kidney failure doesn't necessarily has to go along with a decrease in urine production. Non-specific symptoms such as physical weakness, fatigue or cardiac arrhythmia can occur as well. Water retention in the legs or lungs indicate kidney failure, but other functions may also become unbalanced.

Diagnosis

In our clinic, we offer rapid and specialised diagnostics and therapy to avoid possible life-threatening consequences of acute kidney failure or a permanent reduction in kidney performance. The primary goal is to find the exact cause of your symptoms so that immediate countermeasures can be taken. In some cases, this requires a kidney biopsy.

  • Acute kidney failure often occurs as a result of a serious functional disorder in the body. This can be shock, severe infectious diseases, cardiovascular diseases or poisoning.
  • Also, an impaired urine flow can lead to functional impairment of one or both kidneys, for example due to kidney stones, inflammations, tumours or an enlarged prostate.
  • We use the term intrarenal ARF when the cause of the impairment of renal function lies in the area of the kidneys themselves, for example as a result of damage to the vessels (due to contrast medium, medication, lack of oxygen or a severe inflammation) or an immunological kidney or systemic disease

Tailored treatment

Depending on your individual clinical picture, the first step is to initiate specific therapeutic measures, for example by compensating for a lack of fluid, discontinuing incompatible medication or treating a disturbed urine flow. Further treatment is essentially based on conservative drug therapy. Until the kidney function is stabilized again, we can detoxify the body by means of temporary dialysis (blood purification) if necessary.

With timely therapy, kidney function can usually be completely restored, so that urine production and all other functions return to normal. The duration of treatment depends on the individual clinical picture and can last several weeks.