How do doctors diagnose kidney failure?

There are several tests your doctor can use to diagnose kidney failure. These include:

  • Urinalysis, which uses a urine sample to test for kidney abnormalities
  • Urine volume measurements, during which your doctor measures your urine output to see if there’s blockage
  • Blood samples, which are used to measure substances normally filtered by your kidneys
  • Imaging tests such as ultrasounds, MRIs, and CT scans are used to provide your doctor with a clear picture of the kidneys urinary tract, which can show any blockages or abnormalities in the area
  • Kidney tissue sample, which is taken during a surgical procedure by your doctor to look for abnormal deposits, scarring, or infectious organisms

How do doctors treat kidney failure?

There are several treatments for kidney failure. Your doctor will determine the best treatment option for you, which may include:

  • Dialysis, which filters and purifies your blood using a machine in place of your kidneys. Dialysis cannot cure kidney failure, but it can keep your body stable if you go to regularly scheduled treatments as you await a transplant.
  • A kidney transplant, which replaces your unhealthy kidney with a healthy one. There’s usually a long wait to receive a donor that’s compatible with your body, but if you have a friend or family member who is willing to be a living donor, the process may go more quickly.