High Blood Pressure and Kidneys
If you suffer from high blood pressure and have visited a doctor, the doctor has probably checked your kidneys. So what is the relationship between high blood pressure and kidneys?
High blood pressure can affect three of your vital organs, the brain, the heart and the kidneys. Some people get trouble with all three while others may just develop problems in one of the areas. While efforts to lower blood pressure has successfully reduced the rate of heart disease and brain attacks, not much progress have been made with kidney failures. Since kidney failure is a serious health problem, combating high blood pressure is very important.
You have two kidneys, they are located in the abdominal cavity. One is one the left side of the spine and the other is on the right side. Due to the location of the lever, the right kidney is typically slightly smaller than the left kidney. The right kidney is generally also located slightly lower than the left kidney. The kidneys have a number of functions, the most important is the filtering function, simply put, waste removal. Your kidneys filter out and pass off your body waste.
Explaining exactly how high blood pressure damages the kidneys quickly becomes complicated. To keep things simple, let’s look at the two main ways high blood pressure can damage the kidneys. High blood pressure can damage both the large arteries leading to your kidneys and the tiny blood vessels (glomeruli) within the kidneys. The glomeruli are tiny clusters of blood vessels that filter fluid and waste from your blood. Damage to the glomeruli may make your kidneys unable to filter waste effectively, leading to kidney failure.
While most experts agree that high blood pressure can damage your kidneys, things may be more complicated than that. Research has also indicated that the kidneys can also be a common cause of high blood pressure. If the kidneys are poor at excreting salt from the body, the salt retention leads to water retention and a subsequent rise in blood pressure. This could easily lead to a vicious circle, the higher blood pressure leads to additional kidney damage. This increases the high blood pressure which damages the kidneys even more and so on until kidney failure, also known as end-stage renal disease (ESRD).
Since diabetes can also damage the kidneys, the combination of diabetes and high blood pressure is very dangerous for the kidneys. This is why doctors generally check for diabetes if you suffer from high blood pressure.