Keep your kidneys

Tip 022

One in three patients with type 1 diabetes develop end-stage kidney disease, but new research shows it may be reversible in its early stages.

To protect your kidneys:

  • Control hypertension. Chronic high blood pressure causes damage to the kidneys over time.
  • Regular screening. Get a urine test for albumin (protein) at least annually; early detection of kidney problems is key to preventing further damage.
  • Manage your diabetes. Keep your blood glucose levels within your target range.
  • Stop smoking and cut cholesterol. Manage other cardiovascular risk factors that can increase blood pressure and consequently damage your kidneys.

Talk to your diabetes health care team about your risk for kidney problems, and what you can do to prevent, delay, or even reverse kidney disease.

Reviewed by Francine Kaufman, MD. 4/08

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by Brenda Bell
Many people say that depression is a side effect or complication of diabetes. Without discounting the association of the psychological condition with the physical one, I'm not convinced that our high and/or unstable glucose levels are directly responsible for that change in our mental state. My belief is that the unrelenting need for self-care, for following the sort of care schedules that can drive licensed, professional caregivers crazy, is what overwhelms us...
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