For good health, it is important that all the organs are healthy and well-functioning. Kidney is one of the vital organs that conducts crucial processes to keep the body working fine. The role of kidneys is to detoxify the body by eliminating toxic chemicals and other harmful elements through urine. It filters all the substances that are toxic for the body to keep us fit & healthy. Besides, kidneys also regular water levels in the body and allows better absorption of minerals. Though we have two kidneys and our body can work even with one kidney, it doesn’t mean that we can compromise on our kidney health. If you experience any unusual symptoms, report it to your doctor as ask them to conduct a renal function test. To know what it is, read this article.
What is a kidney function test?
In most cases, kidney function tests are done when the doctor feels that your kidneys are unhealthy and not working properly. Getting the renal function test once a year helps in detecting any underlying health problem related to kidneys. There are two tests conducted under the kidney function test- ACR Test(albumin to creatinine ratio test) and GFR Test(glomerular filtration rate test).
Let us talk about them one-by-one.
The Urine Albumin and Albumin to Creatinine Ratio test checks the urine of the person. Albumin is a type of protein that is necessary for our body. This protein is found in the blood. But when the kidneys are not functioning well, this protein gets flushed out with the urine. Therefore, to check for renal functions, albumin is tested in the urine.
The Glomerular Filtration Rate test checks for creatinine in the blood. Unlike the ACR urine test, the GFR test is a blood test. Creatinine is a kind of waste material that is released from the body through urine. Doctors check for creatinine in the blood to know if the kidneys are working fine. Lesser creatinine found in the blood, better kidney functions. Due to ill-functioning, the kidneys are unable to flush out this element from the blood and it gets mixed to the blood instead.
Kidney biopsy test
In a kidney biopsy test, a small tissue (tissue) piece is extracted from the kidney, and the same tissue test determines the type and stage of the disease. This investigation also shows how bad the kidneys have become.
Things to Note
Before getting a kidney function test, you must take care of a few things that would help in getting accurate results.
- Generally, the first urine of the day(morning) is considered for this test as it provides the best information.
- The doctor may ask you to not eat anything at least 10-12 hours prior to the testing. You can only have water in this period.
- Do not consume alcohol or tobacco at least 24-30 hours before taking this test as it may alter the results.
A regular medical checkup is advised to keep a track of your health and ward off underlying problems. Kidney function tests help in finding out whether your kidneys are functioning well or there is an issue. Timely detection can prevent various renal diseases.
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