Editor’s note: Our guest blogger, examining a new study about the relationship between Serious Kidney Illness and musculoskeletal pain. Advice about controlling the levels of uric acid, phosphorus and calcium is provided.
I came upon natural treatments for kidney illness accidentally, as many people often do when conventional or allopathic medicine runs out of options to help their kidney problems.
Leading up to my doctor’s appointment, I remember thinking that something was wrong. Over the previous several weeks, I had been dealing with consistent headaches, nausea, and fatigue. In the beginning, I remember thinking that I was overworked and wasn’t sleeping a lot. At that time, I was going to college with a full schedule and working full time, so I just brushed it all off.
While I sat in the waiting room, flipping through the issues of your standard doctor’s office magazines, such as Prevention or WebMD news, I just hoped that whatever was going on with me was an easy fix: a pill to take, a nasty-tasting liquid to swallow, or some chalky powder to dissolve under my tongue. After all, this was modern medicine. With all the technology available, I should have been fine in a few days. After I was brought into the exam room, the doctor came in and said that there was something wrong with my kidneys. She wasn’t sure what that was, so she sent me to see a nephrologist. At that point, I followed the standard route of the nephrology practice: the doctor gave me some meds for my blood
pressure and scheduled an appointment for a biopsy.
Biopsies have gotten less invasive since the last time I had one done. But it still isn’t a pleasant experience. A large needle goes through your back until it reaches your kidney and snips a piece of it for analysis. During the analysis, the cells are put on a microscope slide, someone reads it and provides what they believe to be the diagnosis. My initial diagnosis was a rare autoimmune illness but was later changed to unknown glomerulonephritis. At the time, my best option was to start taking 100 mg of prednisone every day. Prednisone is a steroid that suppresses inflammation, but it also has a lot of side effects, such as suppression of the immune system, potential to cause mental illness, insomnia, and many others. I remember the doctor telling me that I “
would get a pizza face.”
With no options available to me, or at least none that either I or my doctors were aware of, I started on prednisone. The first two weeks were fine, but after that, all the nasty side effects started to set in. Insomnia, depression, no appetite and the “pizza face”, just as my doctor said. Those were horrible two months of mental torture. I simply dealt with it, knowing that if this approach worked, many of my worries would disappear and I would regain my health. At my follow-up at the office, I was severely let down, as I was told that the drug had not worked and my kidneys had been getting worse. I was told that nothing could be done, so I would have to wait for dialysis and a kidney transplant.
With this being my only option, I began to search for other alternatives to improve or stop my kidney illness. I consulted everyone, from top-ranked medical doctors to energy healers, herbalists, acupuncturists, nutritionists, and various other healthcare professionals who use natural treatments.
It was $40,000 later that I managed to slow down the progression of my kidney illness, although I wasn’t able to stop it completely. Without a proper diagnosis and with very, very few people actually knowing how to help patients with the kidney illness using natural treatments, I ended up going on dialysis. I stayed on dialysis for 2 1/2 years, using an A/V fistula. During this time I used some natural treatments to keep me healthy until I was lucky enough to receive a cadaver kidney transplant.
The transplant only worked at 30% functionality, but it was enough to maintain good health and good quality of life. I dreaded ever going through kidney failure again. So, I received formal training as a naturopath, with advanced certification in clinical nutrition. I devoted my life to finding natural treatments for kidney illnesses, to improve or stop their progression. Moreover, all of these natural treatments are backed up by valid science. I use these natural therapies in my everyday life and I am still able to maintain 30% of kidney function, along with good quality of life. While those MDs gave me an approximate date by which my transplant would likely fail, it’s been years since that deadline has passed, and I am feeling no worse for the wear. Natural therapies can work. More than that, they can work for you, if only you know which ones to use.