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Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a sudden decrease in kidney function. This can happen over a period of hours, days or, in some cases, weeks. AKI used to be called acute renal failure, but kidney failure doesn't always happen with AKI. Common causes of AKI are serious infection, blood loss, and some medicines.
When AKI happens, the kidneys have trouble removing waste and excess fluids from the body. The waste and fluids build up and become harmful.
Kidney function may return to normal if the cause of AKI is treated quickly. Your chance of a full recovery depends on what caused the problem, how quickly the cause was treated, and what other medical problems you have. You may have a treatment called dialysis. It does the work of healthy kidneys to remove waste and fluids for a short time.
Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments, and call your doctor or nurse call line if you are having problems. It's also a good idea to know your test results and keep a list of the medicines you take.
Call 911 anytime you think you may need emergency care. For example, call if:
Call your doctor or nurse call line now or seek immediate medical care if:
Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor or nurse call line if:
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Current as of: December 17, 2020
Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine & E. Gregory Thompson MD - Internal Medicine & Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Care instructions adapted under license by your healthcare professional. If you have questions about a medical condition or this instruction, always ask your healthcare professional. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.
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