Your kidneys look like beans and are located in the back of your abdomen. They function as “sewage works” of the human body by cleansing, producing urine as the end waste product. They eliminate waste from the body. They also regulate blood pressure, water content and salt balance in the body. Besides functioning as the sewage, they produce a number of vital hormones like erythropoetin (for blood production) and Vitamin D (regulates calcium and phosphate absorption from the intestines).
The function of the kidneys can be affected by various diseases e.g infection caused by bacteria, malaria, kidney stones, tumors or hereditary diseases such as cystic kidneys. Other common causes of kidney disease are diabetes and hypertension. Most kidney diseases can cause a variety of symptoms or complications. These include:
Water retention (edema, swollen legs, arms, eyelids)
High blood pressure (hypertension) as a result of kidney disease
Anemia (shortage of blood) due to chronic renal failure
Hematuria (“blood in urine”)
Cystitis (Infection of the urinary bladder)