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Nephritis: types, causes, symptoms, treatment

Nephritis: types, causes, symptoms, treatment


Nephritis


What is Nephritis?

  • Nephritis = nephron + itis, Here nephron is termed as a kidney and Itis means Inflammation.
  • Nephritis is a clinical condition in which both kidneys are inflamed.
  • When our body shows an inflammatory reaction, these signs are being seen: Temperature, Redness, swelling, pain.
  • This kidney problem is initially called acute nephritis but after a long time, it takes the form of chronic nephritis.
  • If left untreated even during chronic nephritis, this problem can cause kidney failure, this condition used to be known as Bright’s disease.

Definition of Nephritis

Nephritis is a medical condition in which the functional unit of the kidney begins to inflame in the nephron.

    Types of Nephritis 

      Interstitial Nephritis
    1. Interstitial Nephritis - Inflammation occurs in the interstitial space of the kidney, which causes nephritis. The interstitial space in the kidney is known as the gap between two tubules of nephrons, or the gap between the nephron tubules and the peritubular capillaries.
    2. Glomerulonephritis - Swelling of the glomerular capillary (glomerulus) starts inside the kidneys, due to this is unable to filter the blood properly in the kidney.
    3. Pyelonephritis - It is usually caused by a bacterial infection. In most cases, this infection starts from the bladder, later the infection progresses from the ureter to the kidney, causing inflammation in the kidney.
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    Symptoms of Nephritis

    Nephritis symptoms will vary depending on the type of nephritis you have. But some common symptoms are as follows:
    • Pain in the pelvic area
    • Burning and pain when urinating
    • Cloudy urine
    • Frequent urination
    • Blood or pus in the urine 
    • Pain around the abdomen and kidney
    • Swelling of the body, usually in the face and feet
    • Nausea & Vomiting
    • Fever
    • Increased blood pressure


    Cause & Risk Factors of Nephritis

    Causes

    Each type of nephritis has its own causes.

    1. Interstitial nephritis - This type of nephritis can result from an allergic reaction caused by taking any medicine or antibiotic. This can happen when the medicine given by the doctor has an adverse effect on our body.
    Another cause for this may also be a lack of potassium in your blood.

    2. GlomerulonephritisThe actual cause of this type of nephritis is not yet known. But there can be some reasons which can promote kidney infection:
    • Problems of immune system
    • An abscess that burst and travels to your kidneys through your blood
    3. Pyelonephritis - In most cases, this type of nephritis is caused by E.coli bacteria. These bacteria live in the large intestine and come out with feces. The bacteria can travel through the urethra to the bladder and kidneys.
    There are some other reasons that may cause pyelonephritis :
    • Infections at the time of surgery for a bladder, kidney, or ureter.
    • Formation of stone in kidney.  (What is Kidney Stone?)

    Risk Factors 

    • Family History - If earlier someone faces this problem in the family, then this problem can happen in future generations also.
    • Disease of Immune system - such as lupus.
    • Recent surgery of Urinary Tract If hygiene is not maintained at the time of surgery.
    • Taking more antibiotics and painkiller medicines.

    Diagnosis of Nephritis

    • History collection & Physical examination - In order to diagnose Nephritis, the doctor or nurse asks you about your previous medical information. So they can find how much the risk of nephritis has increased.
    • Lab test - These tests include a urinalysis, which helps in finding the presence of blood, bacteria, and white blood cells (WBCs). 
    • Blood test - In this test, creatinine and blood urea nitrogen (BUN) were tested in the blood.Their presence in the blood indicates towards a nephritis.
    • CT-Scan & Ultrasound - These imaging test helps in finding any blockage or inflammation in the kidney or urinary tract.  
    • Renal biopsy - It is the best way to diagnose nephritis. Because in this, a needle is sent to the kidney and a small piece is taken out as a sample and examined in the lab under the microscope. 

    Treatment of Management of Nephritis

    Treatment of nephritis can vary according to its type.

    Pharmacological Management

    • Antibiotics To reduce the bacterial infection, if the infection is severe, it is given in the form of an injection directly into the intravenous.
    • Corticosteroid - It is an effective medicine to reduce inflammation (pain, swelling, redness). It is given when there is too much inflammation in the kidney.

    Non surgical Management 

    • Dialysis When the kidney stops functioning due to excessive inflammation, dialysis is used to filter the blood in such a condition.
    The doctor advises the patient to take food with less salt, protein, and less potassium.


    Prevention of Nephritis

    • Regularly cleaning your gonads to avoid the risk of pyelonephritis.
    • Keep sodium low in your food, especially when you have high blood pressure.
    • Keep your weight normal and exercise regularly.
    • At the time of menstruation, women should use sanitary pads or tampons to prevent bacterial growth around the genitals and to avoid the risk of pyelonephritis.

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