Causes and symptoms of nephritis
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Nephritis is a group of inflammatory kidney diseases affecting the glomerular apparatus. Nephritis can be diffuse (affecting the glomeruli completely) and focal (with separate inflammatory foci). Diffuse nephritis is more dangerous to human health. It can occur in acute and chronic forms.
With nephritis, the calyx-pelvic systems of the kidneys, their tubules, glomeruli and vessels are affected. Inflammation of the kidneys can occur both independently and as a complication of various diseases. Most often, women are susceptible to kidney inflammation.
Nephritis is divided into groups: - pyelonephritis (inflammation of the kidneys of bacterial origin); - glomerulonephritis (inflammation of the glomeruli); - interstitial nephritis (damage to interstitial tissue and renal tubules); - shunt nephritis (complication of immune complexes in the renal glomeruli).
By etiology, nephritis can be primary and secondary.
Primary nephritis occurs as a result of primary kidney disease, among which appears acute or chronic glomerulonephritis. It accounts for about 80% of all cases of nephritis.
Secondary nephritis develops as a secondary disease in a variety of pathological processes. Nephritis can be caused by: - renal amyloidosis, diabetes mellitus; - infectious diseases (tuberculosis, malaria, influenza, syphilis); - autoimmune diseases (rheumatoid arthritis, lupus erythematosus); - abnormal allergic reactions; - vasculitis, myeloma, thrombosis; - oncological diseases; - poisoning with poisons or heavy metals (lead, mercury, gold); - gynecological diseases in women; - pregnancy (nephropathy of pregnant women); -alcoholism.
The clinical symptoms of nephritis do not depend on its causes and always appear the same: general weakness of the patient, loss of appetite, dry mouth and constant thirst, back pain and headache. The amount of urine decreases, sometimes nausea and vomiting, bloating and diarrhea, swelling of the limbs and face are observed. Tests show proteinuria (detection of protein in the urine), hyperlipidemia, hypoproteinemia.
Prolonged kidney inflammation and diuretic use usually cause paresthesia (numbness and tingling sensations in the skin), severe weakness, muscle pain, and cramps. These symptoms appear due to the loss of nutrients by the body, in particular potassium and chlorides. If, due to nephritis, hydrothorax (accumulation of fluid in the pleural cavity) or hydropericardium (accumulation of fluid inside the pericardium) occurs, the patient develops shortness of breath even in a calm state.
Severe swelling of the extremities very often limits the normal activity of a person, interferes with full-fledged life and the performance of any physical work. Patients are passive, they have pallor, dryness and peeling of the skin, normal or low temperature, brittle hair and nails.
Acute inflammation of the kidneys can pass with a significant increase in temperature, chills, and severe sweating. Chronic nephritis is more characterized by night sweats, yellowness of the skin, loss of appetite, frequent urination, causing pain. Blood pressure is increased, urine is cloudy, with flakes.
Chronic nephritis proceeds with alternating exacerbations and remissions. Frequent exacerbations lead to the death of the renal glomeruli: renal failure develops, harmful substances are not excreted from the body, self-poisoning of the body occurs (uremia).
Diagnosis of kidney inflammation includes a general analysis of urine and blood, biochemical blood tests, ultrasound of the kidneys.
Nephritis treatment should take place in a stationary environment. The patient is hospitalized and placed in a special nephrological department, choosing the most rational method of treating this disease.
Bed rest and a specialized diet with fluid and salt restriction are mandatory. Drug treatment involves the use of diuretics, antihistamines, calcium preparations, rutin, ascorbic acid, less often antibiotics and heart drugs.
If nephritis is severe, complex therapy does not give the desired effect and a nephrotic crisis develops, plasmapheresis is used (removal of toxic and metabolic components from blood plasma), hemosorption (blood purification by adsorbing toxins on the surface of the sorbent); use glucocorticosteroids, cytostatics. Treatment always takes place under close medical supervision with regular examination of the patient's blood, urine and urea.
Also, patients with nephritis are recommended sanatorium treatment.
For the prevention of kidney inflammation, it is necessary to timely and efficiently treat glomerulonephritis, kidney and infectious diseases that cause nephritis. Patients with chronic nephritis should avoid physical exertion, nervous strain and hypothermia.
Article author: Mochalov Pavel Alexandrovich | d. m. n. therapist
Education: Moscow Medical Institute. IM Sechenov, specialty - "General Medicine" in 1991, in 1993 "Occupational Diseases", in 1996 "Therapy".