How do I know if I have CKD?
CKD usually does not have any symptoms until your kidneys are badly damaged. The only way to know how well your kidneys are working is to get tested. Being tested for kidney disease is simple. Ask your doctor about these tests for kidney health:
- eGFR (estimated glomerular filtration rate)
The eGFR is a sign of how well your kidneys are cleaning your blood.
Your body makes waste all the time. This waste goes into your blood. Healthy kidneys take the waste out of your blood. One type of waste is called creatinine. If you have too much creatinine in your blood, it might be a sign that your kidneys are having trouble filtering your blood.
You will have a blood test to find out how much creatinine is in your blood. Your doctor will use this information to figure out your eGFR. If your eGFR is less than 60 for three months or more, you might have kidney disease.
- Urine test
This test is done to see if there is blood or protein in your urine (pee).
Your kidneys make your urine. If you have blood or protein in your urine, it may be a sign that your kidneys are not working well.
Your doctor may ask you for a sample of your urine in the clinic or ask you to collect your urine at home and bring it to your appointment.
- Blood pressure
This test is done to see how hard your heart is working to pump your blood.
High blood pressure can cause kidney disease, but kidney disease can also cause high blood pressure. Sometimes high blood pressure is a sign that your kidneys are not working well.
For most people a normal blood pressure is less than 120/80 (120 over 80). Ask your doctor what your blood pressure should be.
Curious to learn more? 💡
- Explore the American Kidney Fund's webpage for additional answers and resources
- See the National Kidney Foudnation's 10 Signs You May Have Kidney Disease guide
- AKF: https://www.kidneyfund.org/kidney-disease/chronic-kidney-disease-ckd/
- NKF: https://www.kidney.org/news/ekidney/august14/10_Signs_You_May_Have_Kidney_Disease