What is it?

Acute Kidney failure is when your kidneys suddenly stops working. Another name commonly used is acute renal failure.
When they are working, the kidney’s job is to get rid of waist, toxins and excess water in your body and excrete them into the urine and out of your body.
Acute kidney injury can be cause by three main mechanisms:
1- There is not enough blood reaching the kidney, preventing it from working properly. This can be cause by dehydration, or by heart failure when not enough blood is pumped out of the heart into the kidneys.
2- The kidney gets damaged by an infection, cancer or certain medications.
3- Something is blocking the urine from getting out of the body, causing it to build-up and damage the kidney. It can appear as a result of certain cancers or a large prostate (in men).

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Additional names

This group contains additional names:
- Acute kidney injury
- Acute Kidney failure
- Acute Kidney Failure with Lesion of Renal Medullary Necrosis
- Acute Kidney Failure with Lesion of Renal Cortical Necrosis
- Acute Kidney Failure with Lesion of Tubular Necrosis

Signs & symptoms

In some cases, a kidney injury appears without any symptoms.
In other, more severe cases, you may notice your face getting puffy, your urine volume decreases, and excess fluids in your lung causing you to cough.
In addition, nausea and tiredness can appear.


Acute kidney failure is diagnosed based on blood and urine tests:
- Urine test- to check for red blood cells, protein, and other unwanted substances in your urine
- Blood test- to check your kidney function.
Other tests such as imaging (CT, Ultrasound) or kidney biopsy might be needed to reach the diagnosis and point to the exact cause.


Treatment vary according to the severity of the injury and its cause.
If it is mild, the kidney will most likely heal itself.
Your doctor will recommend lowering the potassium in your diet and getting treatment for the underlying cause of the kidney failure.
Dialysis, which is a renal replacement therapy, might by indicated in severe cases.

☝️ This is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please consult with your physician before making any medical decision.

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