This month is National Kidney Month. And while you might not realize that there is a direct connection between your foot health and their kidneys, there is a very important one to pay attention to. In fact, your feet may be one of the key places in your body to reveal early signs of kidney disease. Today Dr. Eric Ricefield, Dr. Mark Yagodich, Dr. Aliza V. Eisen, and Cassandra Stache, DPM of greater Philadelphia’s Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center share what you need to know about this important connection.
Kidney Function and Edema
Your kidneys filter waste and regulate the fluid levels in your body. When these functions begin to reduce, it can be a sign of kidney disease. One of the earliest signs of kidney disease is swelling in the feet or edema. Gravity makes fluid naturally pool in your ankles and feet.
When your kidney function is hindered, swelling in the lower extremities increases earlier than in other body parts. Of course, we know that there are other possible causes for swelling of your ankles and feet, including injury, standing for too many hours, and pregnancy.
If you begin to notice swelling consistently in your feet and are not sure what’s causing it, it’s crucial that you make an appointment with your podiatrist to schedule an examination and consultation.
Be Aware of Your Risks
Having your symptoms that may indicate kidney disease evaluated is essential for early diagnosis and proper treatment. Kidney disease can lead to numerous other severe medical issues, including nerve damage, heart attack, high blood pressure, weakened bones, and stroke. Some certain factors place you at a greater risk for developing kidney disease.
- Family history
- High blood pressure
- Being age 60+.
Talk to your podiatrist and physician about any symptoms you may be experiencing that might signal kidney disease. In addition to swelling in the lower extremities, these include blood in the urine, fatigue, increased thirst, and difficult, painful urination.
Your feet are remarkable structures that reflect the conditions that may be occurring in another part of your body. If you feel you are at risk for kidney disease, contact Greater Philadelphia’s Your Next Step Foot and Ankle Care Center to schedule a consultation. You can click here to locate contact information for the office nearest you to book your appointment.