At this time, there are no drugs or medications that can reverse the effects of chronic kidney disease (CKD), but there are those that are developed to help treat symptoms. Symptoms like high blood pressure, and anemia are very common and most patients will also need dialysis at some point.
Below we’ll get into some of the medications that are used, complications that may arise, and the reason for research at NICR to specifically test a drug’s effect on the kidney, and the renal impaired, before a drug comes to market.
High Blood Pressure
Many patients that have chronic kidney disease also have high blood pressure. It is important for these patients to monitor their blood pressure. These patients are many times also prescribed drugs that help to lower blood pressure. ACE inhibitors, beta-blockers, diuretics, and vasodilators are just a handful of medications that are prescribed to lower blood pressure.
The inherent problem here, and an area for research, is that most patients react differently to these prescribed drugs. It may be necessary for a doctor to “try” a few different blood pressure medicines to see which works best for a patient, especially if there are any real side effects, and then perform a blood test.
It also may be necessary to combine drugs in order to get the desired result. At NICR, we believe that by partnering together with pharmaceutical companies, and utilizing our Phase I units for clinical trials, we can research this issue in order to develop more effective drugs for the future.
There are many different complications that can arise from chronic kidney disease. Some of the most common that develop are: anemia, heart disease, and fluid buildup.
One of the main functions for your kidneys is to develop red blood cells. When your kidneys aren’t functioning the way they’re supposed to then they may not be able to develop enough red blood cells; this is called anemia.
It’s has been found that chronic kidney disease can also lead to heart disease. As we will get into further, heart disease is a very common cause of death in America, and for those on dialysis, it is of special concern.
Another function for your kidneys is to remove or filter out extra fluid in your blood. As mentioned above, when your kidneys aren’t working as they should they won’t be able to function efficiently thus not being able to remove enough fluid from your blood. The extra fluid in your blood can end up building up in areas of a patient’s body. Unfortunately the best way to alleviate this problem is to help your kidneys out by controlling your fluid intake, eating a low-salt diet, and really monitoring everything you eat and drink.
At NICR we are continuing to work with pharmaceutical companies in order to find better treatments for those on dialysis and suffering from CKD. We know that medicines work differently for each individual patient. We want to test pain medicines and diabetes medicines and their effects on the kidney so that sometime in the future doctors will have better options in the market.
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