Helping control bood prasure

One of the important functions of the kidnevs is to regulate blood pressure. Healthy kidnevs make hormones such as renin and angiotensin. These hormones regulate how much sodium (salt) and fluid the bodv keeps, and how well the blood vessels can expand and contract. This, in turn, helps control blood pressure.

They do this by regulating:

The amount of water in the body. If there is too much water in the body (fluid overload) blood pressure will go up. If there is too little water in the body (dehydration) the blood pressure will drop.

The width of the arteries. The arteries constantly change in width as blood flows through them. The narrower the arteries, the higher the blood pressure. Renin helps control narrowing of the arteries. Failing kidneys often make too much renin. This raises blood pressure. If your blood pressure is high, your heart is working harder than normal to pump blood through your body.

Iligh blood pressure (also called hypertension), caused by a breakdown in these functions, is common in people with kidney failure. It is also a complication, a secondary condition paused by kidney failure. Helping make red blood eells

Healthy kidneys produce a hormone known as erythropoeitin (IlPO), which is carried in the blood to the bone marrow where it stimulates the production of red я blood cells. These cells carry oxygen throughout the body. Without enough healthy red blood cells you develop anaemia, a condition which makes you feel weak, cold, tired, and short of breath. Maintaining healthy strong bones

Healthy kidneys keep bones strong by producing the hormone calcitriol, Calcitriol maintains the right levels of calcium and phosphate in the blood and bones. Calcium and phosphate balance is important to keep bones healthy.

When the kidneys fail, they may not produce enough calcitriol. This leads to abnormal levels of phosphate, calcium, and vitamin D. causing renal bone disease.

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