Chronic kidney disease is a condition that affects the kidneys and causes them not to function properly. CKD can lead to serious complications, including anemia, high blood pressure, and osteoporosis. This article will discuss mineral and bone disorders in chronic kidney disease.
A mineral and bone disorder in chronic kidney disease is a condition in which the body does not have enough of certain minerals and vitamins. Minerals are substances such as calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, potassium, sodium, and chloride that your body needs to function properly. Vitamins are organic compounds that help the body to perform various functions. A mineral and bone disorder occurs when your kidneys cannot efficiently filter toxins from your blood, leading to bone problems like osteoporosis or fractures when bones become brittle and fragile due to loss of minerals.
What part do the kidneys play in hormone and mineral balance and bone growth?
The kidneys play an important role in hormone and mineral balance and bone growth. Hormones and minerals that are regulated by the kidneys include
- Parathyroid hormone (PTH)
The kidneys are also responsible for the regulation of blood pressure. When the kidneys fail, this can cause high blood pressure or fluid overload. This can be life-threatening if left untreated.
What causes mineral and bone disorders?
The most common causes of mineral and bone disorders are:
- Poor nutrition, including a lack of calcium, vitamin D, and phosphorus in your diet
Other factors that can contribute to mineral and bone disorders include:
- Being around cigarette smoke or other types of air pollution.
How common is mineral and bone disorder?
Mineral and bone disorder is common chronic kidney disease (CKD) complications, but it’s not as common in people with normal kidney function. It’s more likely to develop if you have another disease, such as diabetes, or if your blood calcium or phosphorus levels are too high or too low.
Who is more likely to have this disorder?
Chronic kidney disease:
People with this disease are more likely to have mineral and bone disorders. This is because our kidneys play an important role in maintaining the body’s calcium balance. When you have chronic kidney disease, your body may be unable to keep up with removing extra calcium from your blood.
People who have diabetes are also at risk for this condition because high blood sugar levels can increase the amount of calcium in their urine, which can lead to low levels of calcium in the blood.
As people age, they tend to lose bone mass more quickly than they gain back. This can lead to osteoporosis (weak bones), which increases the risk of fractures or broken bones as you get older—especially if you have another condition that affects your bones, such as rheumatoid arthritis or lupus.
Symptoms of mineral and bone disorders
The symptoms of mineral and bone disorder may include:
- Osteoporosis (weak, brittle bones)
- Fractures (broken bones) that heal poorly or not at all. This can happen even if you haven’t had a fracture. It usually happens in an arm or leg.
If your kidneys don’t work well, your body can’t use minerals and other nutrients from food as well as it should to build strong bones and prevent fractures from happening. You may not have any symptoms if you have low levels of certain minerals in your blood, even though they are causing damage to your bones over time.
How do healthcare professionals diagnose mineral and bone disorders?
- A blood test for measuring the level of calcium, phosphate, and alkaline phosphatase
- A blood test for measuring the level of parathyroid hormone (PTH)
- A urine test to measure the level of calcium, phosphate, and creatinine
How do healthcare professionals treat mineral and bone disorders?
Treatment depends on the type of mineral and bone disorder. Your health care provider may suggest:
- Medications to help reduce your pain and swelling
- Diversion procedures that help relieve pressure in your kidneys (for example, by removing urine from the body)
- Kidney transplantation to replace diseased kidneys with healthy ones
- Surgery to remove kidney stones if they are causing a blockage in your urinary tract.
- Your doctor will recommend lifestyle changes to reduce your chance of developing kidney disease or experiencing complications. These include: Maintaining a healthy weight by eating a well-balanced diet and exercising regularly, Avoiding smoking, Drinking alcohol in moderation (if at all)
Can I prevent mineral and bone disorders?
You can help prevent mineral and bone disorders by eating a healthy diet, avoiding tobacco, exercising regularly, and getting enough vitamin D supplements if you are at risk.
The kidneys are vital in regulating the balance of minerals and bone disorders in chronic kidney disease. If this system is compromised, it can lead to serious complications, including death. Treatment options vary depending on the severity of your condition and may include medications and lifestyle changes.