Middle aged woman looking out a window with great concern for her kidney failure diagnosis

If you have kidney disease, it’s important to be aware of the early warning signs. In many cases, these symptoms can be mild and go unnoticed. However, if left untreated, kidney disease can progress and cause serious health complications. Here are three of the most common early warning signs of kidney disease. Keep an eye out for them and call your doctor if you experience any of them.


Kidney disease is a severe medical condition that can lead to organ failure. Early detection and treatment are crucial to managing the condition and preventing its progression.


People should be aware of several warning signs of kidney disease. These include:


Changes in urination frequency or appearance

Kidney disease can cause changes in the quantity and quality of urine produced. This may manifest as an increase or decrease in frequency and changes in the appearance of urine (e.g., cloudy or bloody urine).


Swelling in the extremities

Kidney disease can cause fluid retention, which leads to swelling in the ankles, feet, legs, and hands. Such swellings may be localized towards the lower extremities, often noticed after waking up or sitting down for a long time. As the disease progresses, the swelling may extend towards the hips or even the whole body.

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Fatigue and malaise

Kidney disease can cause anemia, which leads to fatigue and malaise. Due to the underlying pathologies, your body may be consuming its energy stores from adipose tissues and eventually breakdown muscle protein (this can show up in a routine urine test). Most people with chronic diseases have a decreased appetite as well which can lead to lethargy.



Kidney disease can cause fluid retention, which leads to edema (swelling). As mentioned above, localized swelling can be more generalized as the disease progresses without treatment, like removing the cause of kidney damage or dialysis.

Edema may explain the unusual weight gain that can occur, this blog article explains in detail the causes of weight gain in kidney patients.


gold standard of blood pressure measurement with stethoscope by a doctor


The kidneys have a crucial function in managing blood pressure in your body by altering urine output, mineral recycling and certain hormone balances. Kidney disease can cause high blood pressure, which can lead to a number of serious complications.


If you experience any of these symptoms, it is important to see a nephrologist (kidney specialist) for evaluation and treatment. Early detection and treatment of kidney disease are essential for preventing its progression and preserving kidney function.


Early detection of kidney disease is crucial because it can be managed effectively when caught in the early stages. If you experience any of the warning signs highlighted in this article, don’t hesitate to call your doctor. They will order the necessary tests to determine if you have kidney disease and develop a treatment plan accordingly.


Dr. Juan Jaller Char, MD offers nephrology consults for patients with suspected or confirmed kidney disease. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.


Dr. Juan Jaller Char, MD

Nephrology Specialist


Dr. Ismail Sayeed

Dr. Sayeed is the Medical Director of ViOS, Inc. He is a deeply committed physician entrepreneur & medical blog writer. While building the global infrastructure of the VIOS Clinic, he is dedicated to educate people on the potential of specialist telemedicine for managing chronic diseases.

Read more about him in his author bio

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