Importance of Health Insurance for Kidney Failure Treatment

The prime responsibility of the kidney is to filter the blood that passes through it to not let any waste or redundant fluids. Since the very same blood flows through each part of the body, the safety of each organ, limb, muscle, and nerve is dependent on the functions of the kidney.


When the kidneys stop functioning, that’s when kidney failure occurs. Here one or both kidneys cannot work properly without the assistance of external support equipment. This brings in the need for dialysis, transplants, imaging, scanning, blood tests, hospitalisation, day-care, etc. In short, it brings in a whole host of expenses which health insurance can efficiently save you from. However, it is a prerequisite to educate yourself on what kidney failure is, its causes, treatment, and how you can save yourself from heavy treatment expenses for kidney failure.

The Stages of Kidney Failure


Kidney failure is not a sudden occurrence. It progresses gradually and worsens over time. Its progression can be tracked through an estimated glomerular filtration rate. This rate indicates how well your kidneys are able to filter substances. A 0 score on this scale would mean that the kidneys have stopped functioning completely.


Its stages are explained as follows.


Stage 1

The eGFR shows a score of 90 to 100. This signals towards mild damage to the kidneys.


Stage 2

Your score of the eGFR is between 60 to 89. The damage has increased but the kidneys are still doing their job well.


Stage 3

At this stage, you could have mild loss of function if your score is towards 59 while a score closer to 30 would indicate severe damage.


Stage 4

The eGFR score could read anywhere from 15 to 29. This shows severe kidney damage


Stage 5

At this point, your eGFR will be below 15. Your kidney has either fully failed or is nearing that level.

What Are the Symptoms of Kidney Failure?

Kidney failure is a serious condition that brings with itself various symptoms that indicates its existence in one’s body. You need to keep in mind that symptoms don’t show themselves in the early stages and the display of such symptoms could mean that your kidney failure has reached an advanced stage.


If you find the following symptoms in you, please consult a doctor at the earliest about the possibility of kidney failure.


  • Volume of urine decreasing
  • Shortness of breath
  • Constant nausea
  • Pain or pressure in the chest
  • Swollen ankles, legs and feet
  • Fatigue
  • Drowsiness
  • Confusion
  • Seizures


However, there are a few early signs that could save your life if caught at the right time. Those symptoms are as follows.


  • Decline in quality of urine
  • Shortness of breath
  • Swelling in the limbs


There have been cases where an individual fails to identify signs early enough and total kidney failure is complete, with the kidney losing all functions. Here’s what that scenario can look like in a human body.


  • Intense back pain
  • Fever
  • Rashes
  • Vomiting
  • Abdominal pain
  • Diarrhoea

Diagnosis of Kidney Failure

Once you approach a doctor upon finding symptoms of kidney failure in your body, a series of diagnostics protocols will be followed and you will be required to undergo some tests and scans for the doctor to diagnose your condition. The diagnosis options are stated below.


Blood Tests

These tests can show the efficiency with which your kidney can filter blood. With just a few millilitres of blood extracted, your doctor can catch how well the waste removal process in your kidneys is going.


Urine Sampling

A urine test is also a great way of learning about your kidney’s efficiency of filtration. Here, various factors such as the presence of protein and blood are determined through this test.


Imaging and Scans

Imaging such as ultrasounds, CT urogram, MRIs, etc. can help medical professionals find any blockages or abnormalities in your kidneys. Furthermore, certain scarring and tissue quality can be seen through imaging and the extent of failure can be seen.

Who Is Affected by Kidney Failure


Kidney failure is commonplace now, but it is still terribly painful to endure as a chronic illness. However, those who are suffering from the following ailments and diseases are at higher risk of kidney failure. If you do have these health issues, it is time to start taking precautionary measures.


  • Diabetes
  • Heart disease
  • Abnormal structure of the kidney
  • Long-term consumption of painkillers and anti-inflammatory drugs
  • Hypertension
  • A history of kidney disease in the family

Causes of Kidney Failure


Ailments such as hypertension and diabetes can most commonly cause kidney failure or chronic kidney-related diseases. If not controlled, unchecked diabetes causes hyperglycemia (high blood sugar levels). This could damage your kidney along with other organs.


Hypertension can cause your blood to rush at extreme speeds through the body and that very rush can cause damage over time to your kidney tissues. You can tell that damage like this can happen over a prolonged period of time.


  • Polycystic Kidney Disease: It is inherited. Cysts (fluid sacs) grow on the inside of your kidneys
  • Glomerular Disease: Your kidney’s filtration abilities can be hampered
  • Lupus: This is an autoimmune disease. It causes organ damage which could include the kidneys.


Even though kidney failure is progressive, it can happen at a very fast rate. Kidneys in some cases could lose function within the matter of days or even hours. Other causes include:


  • Autoimmune kidney ailments
  • Excessive intake of certain medication
  • Severe dehydration (lack of water in the body)
  • Obstruction in the urinary tract
  • Untreated systemic diseases such as liver disease or heart disease

What Can You Do to Treat Kidney Failure

In some cases, kidney failure could be severe or mild. If it does happen to be mild and not aggressive, the speed at which the organ is failing can be slowed down through treatment. For a milder treatment, regular blood tests, blood pressure checks and medicines could work. However, if the condition is more on the severe end, dialysis or kidney transplant are the remaining options.



Dialysis is a lot like a faux kidney, It does the kidney’s job by artificially filtering your blood for you. The two types of dialysis are explained below.


Hemodialysis: Here a machine will religiously clean your blood for you on a regular basis. The patient is required to visit the hospital for this 2 to 4 times a week.


Peritoneal Dialysis: This process is very internal. A bag with dialysis solution is attached to the lining of your stomach. The solution settles on your abdominal lining where waste products and extra fluids are absorbed. The dialysis solution is drained back into the bag.


Kidney Transplant

This is a very simple concept. It is a surgery wherein your infected or failed kidney is taken out to be replaced with a donor’s healthy kidney. Your body then accepts that organ and you can continue to  live a healthy life with one kidney.


The Safety Net


Let’s face it. The dialysis, transplants, medication, diagnosis, hospitalisation, day-care, post-hospitalisation and so many more requirements are mighty expensive. However, they need to be fulfilled since they could help you survive in case of kidney failure. An individual is forced to produce the funds for these medical needs by borrowing, loans, sacrificing their savings, selling their assets, etc. Nobody deserves to lose their hard earned money this suddenly.


Hence, cases like these are saved through health insurance. The best health insurance companies out there offer coverage by a lump sum for illnesses such as kidney failure. Moreover, there are special plans even, like chronic illness health insurance, that can cover the expenses of your basic treatment requirements.


You can also claim benefits such as day-care treatment benefits, dialysis coverage, pharmaceutical reimbursement, hospitalisation coverage, transplant coverage, etc. Through health insurance, you have full support through your journey of kidney failure treatment to help you fully focus on recovery.

In Conclusion


Kidney failure and other chronic kidney diseases are no walk in the park. It is chronic pain, fatigue, helplessness and stress. It can cause you emotional, psychological, physiological and financial strain simultaneously. You could deal with the emotional, psychological and physiological strain by taking professional help, but what about the financial strain? Here’s where health insurance can step in to save the day. You can have your kidney treatment expenses covered along with other benefits like discounts and cashless treatments. This way, you can be protected from all directions no matter the needs or emergency.


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