Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Diabetic Nephropathy Overview

What is diabetic nephropathy?
A person with diabetic nephropathy has damage to the kidneys caused by long-standing diabetes. Diabetes damages the blood vessels in the kidneys. Eventually, the kidneys are unable to filter waste from the bloodstream, and unable to remove excess fluid from the body. Diabetes is the most common cause of kidney failure in the US.

What are the symptoms of diabetic nephropathy?
Symptoms of diabetic nephropathy include anorexia, nausea, vomiting, headaches, itching, excessive fatigue, facial swelling, leg swelling, swollen feet, and weight gain.

How does the doctor treat diabetic nephropathy?
Treatment for diabetic nephropathy may include insulin, oral hypoglycemic medications, weight loss, ACE inhibitor medications, angiotensin receptor blockers, and a kidney diet. Kidney dialysis or kidney transplant may be options for end stage renal disease.

Continue to Diabetic Nephropathy Incidence

Last Updated: Feb 8, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Diabetic Nephropathy References
  1. Olson DE, Norris SL. Diabetes in older adults. Overview of AGS guidelines for the treatment of diabetes mellitus in geriatric populations. Geriatrics. 2004 Apr;59(4):18-24. [15086070]
  2. Shlipak M. Diabetic nephropathy. Clin Evid. 2004 Dec;(12):814-33. [15865682]
  3. Thorp ML. Diabetic nephropathy: common questions. Am Fam Physician. 2005 Jul 1;72(1):96-9. [16035688]
  4. Wittmann I, Molnar GA, Degrell P, et al. Prevention and treatment of diabetic nephropathy. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2005 Jun;68 Suppl1:S36-42. [15955373]
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