If you are experiencing kidney problems or reasonably believe the kidneys of a family member need most earnest attention, it is time to visit a neurologist.
What does a Nephrologist do?
A nephrologist is a medical professional who specializes in kidney care, making sure they function well. They undergo training in internal medicine before specializing in treating patients with kidney diseases. They do a proper study of your kidney to help determine the next step in treatment.
On your first visit, you may be anxious and wondering how things will go. Here are a few things to expect:
- Expect answers to the numerous questions you may have to go into your mind. The kidney doctors are specialized in their field and will answer your questions on treating kidney diseases like hypertension/high blood pressure, kidney stones, PKD- Polycystic Kidney Disease, acute renal failure, or CKD – Chronic Kidney Disease performing kidney dialysis (hemodialysis or peritoneal), kidney transplants.
- Write your questions in a notebook and bring them with you on your visit. You will learn new things like what to expect to happen to your kidneys now and in the future. Carry a pen to record some of the answers you get.
- During your visit, the doctor will review your medical history and perform further diagnosis. Expect questions to do with this.
- Carry any relevant records on past diagnoses, details of doctors you have worked with, details of your special diet if any, prescriptions you’ve been taking (and for what diseases), medical history of family members, radiology reports, and test results from laboratories you’ve been to.
- Expect the doctor to do urine and blood tests to determine how well your kidneys are functioning.
- Besides, expect a thorough exam of your physical state – which sometimes is accompanied by a kidney ultrasound.
- When talking to your doctor learn about their experiences – do’s and don’ts – and hear their recommendations for you going forward.
- Be frank about any challenges you may be experiencing in your pursuit of good health: struggles to do with sticking to prescribed dose schedules, quitting smoking, sticking to eating plans, or any other diseases you may be suffering from.
- Furthermore, expect the doctor to inform you about the kind of support you’ll get from them and the team they may be working with – often a nurse, dietician, other doctors, and social workers.
- You’ll be visiting your Nephrologist every 1 to 3 months (if your CKD stage doesn’t require dialysis) for evaluation of your condition and treatment of any problems that may have arisen since your previous visit.
- Depending on your diagnosis, also expect you may be referred to a transplant centre – if your condition requires dialysis. If you’re to undergo dialysis, you’ll be meeting your doctor at least once a month.
Ask as many fundamental questions as you want from your nephrologist – and also bring in records of your medical history. That will assist you to identify your options for treatment – and also help the nephrologist’s expertise shine to help alleviate the worries, doubts, and anxieties you may have.