By Adebowale Oguntola, M.D
May is National Blood Pressure Month and it is a great time to remind people in Central New York of the importance of maintaining a healthy blood pressure. Hypertension is the term used to describe high blood pressure.
In our community, people with high blood pressure and kidney disease often don’t notice any symptoms. Common symptoms to watch for include headache, unexplained bloody nose, and swollen ankles. It is important to be aware of these symptoms, as high blood pressure has an immediate negative affect on the kidneys. If the condition is not treated, kidney functioning will be decreased.
Kidney disease is a progressive disease, meaning that it usually does not go away, unless the patient has a kidney transplant or has experienced an acute kidney injury. Kidney doctors like myself provide specialized care and expert medical knowledge to best control blood pressure and to preserve healthy kidney functioning for as long as possible. A care plan is developed, based on the patient’s current lab results and kidney functioning. The individualized plan for each patient includes recommended diet, hydration, medication, body weight, daily activity level and lifestyle will be developed. Other factors such as iron levels, vitamin D, anemia and bone disease must also be carefully monitored.
Over the past year during the COVID-19 global pandemic, health care providers and staff at Nephrology Associates of Syracuse have been working very hard to ensure that kidney care is accessible and available. The practice recently completed an extensive office renovation project to enhance the patient experience and staff work flows. Telemedicine visits are available, as well as individualized patient education sessions in person and via telemedicine.
It is crucial for patients with kidney disease to have access to regular and ongoing care. If care is not regularly maintained, a patient’s kidney function may be negatively affected. The patient may not even be aware until a health crisis arises. The goal of kidney care is to help patients manage their disease so that they can prevent trips to the emergency room and or the hospital.
Because high blood pressure and diabetes are the two main causes of kidney disease, the importance of careful monitoring and management is vital. The practice offers blood pressure checks, kidney disease education, medical nutrition therapy, care after a hospitalization, and chronic care management to help patients maintain health.
All community members are encouraged to take good care of their health and maintain a healthy blood pressure.
For more information, call 315-478-3311 or visit www.nephrologysyracuse.com.