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Single Kidney Long Term

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

To all of you long term nephrectomees...

I am very curious to know how your single kidney function has held up over time.

Does it hold steady or decline slowly?

I always assumed, and I think it is a common assumption, that people get along just fine with only one kidney and it is just as though they had never lost or donated the other one.  Groups looking for donors all take this line.

But I have also read some evidence and opinion that paints a less rosy picture.  That is, that reduced kidney function is likely to influence our general health as we age.

So I'd love to hear from people with real experience (or anyone with an opinion).

Steve.

 

 

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 3280
Joined: Jan 2010

Steve,

With almost 15 years let me give a few thoughts. First kidney issues effect a lot more than failure or dialysis. Additionally there a lot of negative things that effect your kidney function only 1 of which is having less than 2 kidneys. Others include overall health, wfight, blood pressure, diabities and other kidney problems. Additionally as you get older kidney function declines. The fact that we have decreased kidney function effects cardiac issues way before kidney failure. The one thing I did which showed an increase in my kidney function numbers is lose 65 pounds over the past 3 years from diet (recommended) and Pnemonia (not recommended). So when and if your numbers decrease GFR (and they will) make the effort to address at least initially these issues with a Nephrologist.

 

 

Icemantoo

Hd67xlch's picture
Hd67xlch
Posts: 148
Joined: Apr 2016

If I didnt know it was gone Id never even notice I had only one kidney, about 6 years for me. My step Dad went 35 + years after his kidney removal and he made it to 88, and died of unrelated things.

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 3183
Joined: Oct 2011

Last blood work was..gfr over 60. Creatinine .8.

Skagway Jack's picture
Skagway Jack
Posts: 224
Joined: Oct 2013

My GFR and creatine have improved since my nephrectomy in 2013.  Im still just below what is considered normal for a dual kidney person, but it doesnt prevent me from doing pretty much anything I want.  I try to remember to drink more water than I used to, and I worrry about hydration when I am excersizing.  Otherwise thats about the sum of it.  I do recommend seeing a nephrologist for a consult if you can. 

 

 

Jan4you's picture
Jan4you
Posts: 1326
Joined: Oct 2013

No problem at all, post nephrectomy! In fact it continues to function effectively in spite of  my other rare kidney disorder.

AND we can keep our liver/kidneys healthy with good diet and HYDRATION!! (and beer doesn't count LOL) Our kidney function should not decline with age until we are actively dying!

Jan

CRashster's picture
CRashster
Posts: 236
Joined: Mar 2017

I don't think long term. I'm now a day to day guy.

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

Thanks for all of your replies.

I am just trying to get a good understanding of how my system is likely to function in the (many) years ahead.  My last eGFR (with 2 kidneys) was >90 (I think) and I'm pretty sure my lifestyle is kidney friendly. I will remain 'kidney careful' whatever happens.

If anyone here has tracked their kidney function over time I'd be very interested to get some numbers for the first year or so after the nephrectomy.  This is for curiousity, really.  I'll soon have my own numbers to collect.

Steve.

CRashster's picture
CRashster
Posts: 236
Joined: Mar 2017

My pre-surgery eGFR was 45. So, after surgery my urologist estimates it was 20 something. Then, 38. Now, they estimate 40 something. As long as it keeps climbing, I'm good.

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

How did you feel when it was very low?

CRashster's picture
CRashster
Posts: 236
Joined: Mar 2017

It's kind of hard to judge, because I felt bad for a while and it was gradual so I never really noticed the decline. Plus. it's been kind of a hard road back. Lately, I've had alot of dizziness. I've started taking magnesium and vitamin D3 and that seems to be doing the trick.

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

If you are feeling bad for other reasons it's impossible to know if kidney function contributes.

Thanks for the info.

Steve.

Iggyrip
Posts: 43
Joined: Sep 2016

Great question. I had my kidney removed in Oct 2016 and have wondered the same. Since my surgery, I have lost some weight and plan to love more. I have also drastically reduced my sodium and protein intake. I am hoping to be around for while.

 

Iggyrip

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

Loving more is a great plan.

foxhd's picture
foxhd
Posts: 3183
Joined: Oct 2011

I sign up?

donna_lee's picture
donna_lee
Posts: 963
Joined: Feb 2009

pounce on the fun of mis-spelled words.

The one that got me in last week's local was the Food and eatery reviewer writing about the new sandwich and burger place.  the sandwich was chalk full of .......   What did he do, clean out the eraser tray of the old school house?  Those homonyms can really trip you up.

And as to the regular question posed.  I haven't noticed a problem with age.  But once cancer has entered the picture, I do think we tend to be more attuned to what's happening with the body, and try to take better care of it.

donna_lee

 

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

From what people have said I think I will be OK since my kidney function was good before.

Even people without great kidney function seem to be doing OK.

I hope you are doing OK too.

I have only been health focused for the past couple of years and adding a nephrectomy certainly increases that focus!

Steve.

Rickdr89
Posts: 3
Joined: Mar 2017

Thanks everybody.

I'm scheduled to have my left kidney removed soon, and I'm feeling a lot better after reading through this thread. 

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 3280
Joined: Jan 2010

Rick,

 

Tell us a little about yourself on a new thread so we can help you thru this.

 

Icemantoo

Steve.Adam's picture
Steve.Adam
Posts: 460
Joined: Oct 2016

If you like you can start a new thread and tell us all about it.

Everyone here is interested.

Steve.

Rickdr89
Posts: 3
Joined: Mar 2017

@Iceman and Steve: thanks guys, I will next time I log in. 

jgaylor
Posts: 1
Joined: May 2017

Hello all.  I'm Jessica.  I am a five year breast cancer survivor who donated a kidney to my husband (now EX-husband, lol) six years before my cancer diagnosis.  My one kidney probably faced quite a bit of hardship during chemotherapy but it made it through...although now (just three years after treatment ended) I am starting to have a lot of other health issues.  Just was diagnosed with gallbaladder disease (due to my thyroid...what?) and my kidney doesn't seem to be doing so great.  My last lab was a GFR estimate of 53 with creatinine at 1.2 and BUN at 22.  I KNOW I was severely dehydrated at the time (and struggle with this constantly).  But I am wondering if anyone else has low GFR estimates due to having only one kidney?  Mine has slowly declined in the last year.  I want to make an appointment with a nephrologist (as my oncologist is my primary and handles everything) but wondering if that is necessary.  Is the GFR low due to the scale being for two kidneys?  Do I possibly have CKD?  I'm trying to stay positive but I'm concerned.  My creatinine number has stayed steady between 1.1-1.2 after surgery.  My BUN has moved up and down a lot, presuming due to water intake.  I am very active and go through periods of eating perfect and then get stressed and eat bad on occassion.  At 41 I never imagined all of this. At 35 I never imagined cancer, especially after my health was so good I donated a kidney!  But life is funny.   I paid attention to everything!  I also recently had to undergo a total hysterectomy due to the breast cancer risk. Maybe the menopause affected the kidney function?  Again, staying positive as always, but looking for any insight you may have.  Thank you all for your help!  Sending you happiness, health and healing!  

icemantoo's picture
icemantoo
Posts: 3280
Joined: Jan 2010

Jessica,

Expect your numbers to be lower with 1 kidney. Definately see a Nephrlogist for a plan forward. Mine was below yours before I lost weight.

 

 

Icemantoo

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