What is IgA nephropathy?
Also called Berger’s disease, IgA nephropathy, is basically a kidney disease which tend to occurs when IgA (antibody) accumulates in the tissues of your kidney, consequently affecting its normal functions.
What are the symptoms of IgA nephropathy?
Normally, IgA nephropathy causes no obvious signs in its initial stages. It can even go unobserved for years until routine tests shows red blood cells and protein in urine. Few common symptoms (when the functions of kidney become impaired) of IgA nephropathy are:
- High blood pressure.
- Edema in feet and hands.
- Urinary bleeding of tea or cola colored.
- Pain in the back sides below the ribs.
What causes IgA Nephropathy?
Basically, a protein IgA, is an antibody which helps our body fight again infections. Berger’s disease tends to strike when excessive IgA starts accumulating inside the kidney’s small blood vessels. As a result, glomeruli- structures in your kidney gets damaged and inflamed.
Moreover, IgA Nephropathy can be acute- appear suddenly or chronic- become worse gradually taking years.
What are the risk factors of IgA nephropathy?
Few risk factors known to trigger IgA nephropathy include:
- Ethnicity: it strikes more Asians and Caucasians than blacks.
- Sex: men are at a higher risk of developing the disorder than women.
- In case the disorder runs in family, than chances are that you can also develop it.
What are the possible complications of IgA nephropathy?
Specific complications associated with IgA nephropathy include:
- Chronic kidney failure.
- High blood pressure.
- High cholesterol.
- Acute kidney failure.
- Nephritic syndrome.
How is IgA nephropathy diagnosed?
Strangely, the symptoms of IgA nephropathy may go unnoticed for years until you see blood in urine or through a test that reveals blood or protein in urine, conducted for some other reason. In order to diagnose IgA nephropathy, the doctor can suggest:
- Urine test: protein or blood in urine may signal the disorder.
- Blood test: increased blood levels of creatinine may indicate IgA nephropathy.
- Lothalamate clearance test: the test will determine whether or not your kidneys are functioning properly.
- Kidney imaging: X-rays or ultrasounds can be used in order to assess your kidney’s size or shape.
- Kidney biopsy: in case the doctor suspect IgA nephropathy, then you are more likely to go through this procedure commonly used for diagnosing the disorder. In this procedure, the doctor will take out small tissue pieces of your kidney using a specific biopsy needle. Through a microscope, he will examine the possibilities of IgA buildup in glomeruli.
How is IgA nephropathy treated?
Unfortunately, IgA nephropathy is incurable and there is no particular way to identify what course it will take. Few tend to lead normal lives with low levels of protein or blood in their urine while others face complete remission.
Moreover, for treating the disorder, the doctor can suggest certain drugs that can help slow down the progression of IgA nephropathy, whilst manage your symptoms for example edema, preteinuria (protein in urine) and high blood pressure. Medications include:
- Medications for high blood pressure.
- Omega-3 fatty acids.
- Statin therapy.
- Mycophenolate mofetil.
By : Natural Health News