What is Kidney Disease?


March is National Kidney Month, a good time to learn about your kidneys.

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March is National Kidney Month, a good time to learn about your kidneys. Hi, I'm Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive, and Kidney Diseases at NIH.

You have two kidneys, each about the size of your fist. Their main job is to filter waste and extra water out of your blood. With kidney disease your kidneys can't filter blood like they should. This can cause waste to build up in your body and other health problems.

People of all ages and races can be affected by kidney disease. In the early stages there are often no symptoms and people don't know they have it. Kidney disease can get worse over time and may lead to kidney failure, which requires dialysis or kidney transplant.

What can you do? Well, you should talk to your doctor about getting tested--especially if you have high blood pressure or diabetes--and encourage your family and friends to do so, too.

Follow us on Twitter @NIDDKgov. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers with the NIH.

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