End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Explained


Feb 22, 2023

End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Explained

Understanding End-Stage Renal Disease: Causes, Symptoms, and Treatment Options


End-stage renal disease, also known as ESRD, is a serious medical condition that occurs when the kidneys stop functioning properly. This article will explain what ESRD is, what causes it, and what treatment options are available.

What is ESRD?

The kidneys are responsible for filtering waste products and excess fluid from the body. When they stop working, waste and fluids build up in the body and can cause serious health problems. ESRD is often the result of a chronic kidney disease that has progressed over time, and it can lead to a range of complications, including high blood pressure, anemia, bone disease, and heart disease.

What Causes ESRD?

There are a number of different causes of ESRD, including diabetes, high blood pressure, glomerulonephritis, and polycystic kidney disease. It is important to identify and treat these underlying conditions as early as possible to prevent the development of ESRD.

Symptoms of ESRD

Symptoms of ESRD can vary from person to person, but some of the most common include fatigue, shortness of breath, nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, and swelling in the legs and feet. In some cases, people with ESRD may also experience confusion, seizures, or coma. It is important to seek medical attention if these symptoms are present.

Diagnosing ESRD

In order to diagnose ESRD, a doctor will typically perform a series of tests, including blood tests, urine tests, and imaging studies of the kidneys. Early diagnosis is critical to starting treatment as soon as possible.

Treatment Options

There are a number of different treatments available for people with ESRD. One of the most common is dialysis, which is a process that helps to remove waste and excess fluids from the body when the kidneys are no longer able to do so. There are two main types of dialysis: hemodialysis, which involves using a machine to filter the blood outside the body, and peritoneal dialysis, which involves using a catheter to fill the abdomen with a special fluid that helps to remove waste from the blood.

In some cases, people with ESRD may also be candidates for kidney transplantation. This involves receiving a new kidney from a donor, which can help to restore kidney function and improve overall health. It is important to discuss the benefits and risks of kidney transplantation with a healthcare provider.

Living with ESRD

Living with ESRD can be challenging, but there are a number of resources available to help people manage their condition. Support groups, counseling, and educational programs can all be helpful for people with ESRD and their families. It is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, including following a balanced diet, staying active, and avoiding smoking and excess alcohol consumption.

Prevention of ESRD

Prevention is key when it comes to ESRD. People who are at risk for developing the condition should take steps to protect their kidney health, such as controlling their blood pressure and blood sugar levels, avoiding smoking and excess alcohol consumption, and getting regular check-ups with their doctor.


End stage renal disease is a serious medical condition that requires prompt medical attention. Treatment options include dialysis and kidney transplantation, and there are a number of resources available to help people manage their condition. By taking steps to protect kidney health and seek medical attention when necessary, people can help to prevent ESRD from developing in the first place.

Related Articles

Creatinine and eGFR; What Are They and Why Are They Important?

What is Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)?

How Organ Donation and Transplantation Works

What is Dialysis?


End-Stage Renal (Kidney) Disease

End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD)

Kidney failure (ESRD) - Symptoms, causes and treatment options

About the Author

Rich Foreman brings over 30 years of technology leadership to his role of CEO and Co-Founder of KidneySoft.  As founding CTO, Rich led the team that developed the CordicoShield / CordicoFire Wellness App. Cordico was honored with the Sacramento Innovation Award in 2021. After achieving a 7 digit ARR, Cordico was acquired by Lexipol in 2020. Rich has a BS in Industrial Engineering from the University of Washington, an MPA from Troy State University and was an officer in the U.S. Navy. Rich co-authored his book, "Tap into the Mobile Economy." Rich's blog was listed in Top 20 Marketing Mobile Blogs of 2014. He has been featured on KCRA3, NEWS10, 1170 Tech AM PowerDrive, Business Radio Money 105.5, SiliconIndia, the Sacramento Business Journal, and the Sacramento Bee. Rich is also the Founding Director of the Sacramento Chapter of Startup Grind and served a term as Utility Commissioner for the City of Folsom. Rich is a regular contributor to TechWire.net and StartupSac. Rich was the Co-founder of Apptology which was named Small Business of the Year in 2014 by the Sacramento Asian Pacific Chamber. He was also the Founding Chief Technology Officer at Cordico. Cordico was acquired by Lexipol in 2020.  Rich also served 4 years as a Naval Officer in the Civil Engineer Corps.

Patient Education Disclaimer

This material is for informational purposes only. It does not replace the advice or counsel of a doctor or health care professional. KidneyLuv makes every effort to provide information that is accurate and timely, but makes no guarantee in this regard. You should consult with, and rely only on the advice of, your physician or health care professional.

KidneyLuv Logo