Some symptoms of kidney disease include edema in the lower legs, fatigue, nausea, muscle cramps and loss of appetite, states Mayo Clinic. Other symptoms can include vomiting, muscle twitches, weakness, hiccups and high blood pressure that is difficult to control. The early stages of kidney disease often produce no symptoms.
Kidney disease gradually damages the kidneys, leading to a loss of kidney function, Mayo Clinic explains. There are several causes of kidney disease, including high blood pressure, polycystic kidney disease, interstitial nephritis, recurrent kidney infections and diabetes. Treatment for kidney disease requires treating the cause. Some treatments can help with the general symptoms of kidney disease, however, including medications for lowering high blood pressure, decreasing swelling, lowering cholesterol, protecting bones and preventing anemia. Doctors often recommend diets with decreased protein, as these can decrease the burden on the kidneys.
Kidney disease can lead to kidney failure, a condition in which the kidneys are unable to perform their normal function, states Mayo Clinic. A person with kidney failure requires a kidney transplant to survive. Until a kidney transplant is available, dialysis can perform the most crucial role of the kidneys by using a machine to filter waste and excess fluid from the blood.