Acute Kidney Failure (cont.)
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Acute Kidney Failure Diagnosis
Many people with acute renal failure notice no symptoms. Even with symptoms, they are nonspecific, meaning they could be caused by many different conditions. A physical examination typically reveals few, if any, abnormal findings.
Kidney failure is often detected from blood or urine tests. These tests might be ordered because the patient is in the hospital for another reason, because they don't feel well and can't tell why, or as part of a routine health screening.
The amount of urine produced over a period of hours may also be measured for quantity and quality or the amount of wastes being excreted. When kidney tissue is injured, protein and desirable substances may be inappropriately excreted in the urine. In some cases, the amount of urine remaining in the bladder after urination will be measured by inserting a catheter (a thin, rubber tube) that drains the bladder.
If the diagnosis is not certain after laboratory tests, an ultrasound of the kidneys and bladder may be done to help reveal signs of specific causes of kidney failure.
In some cases, tissue samples of the kidneys are taken (biopsy) to find the cause of the renal failure.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 8/2/2012
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