Triple Digit Temperature Warning

Yesterday was our first triple digit day this year in sunny Arizona.  It was also the day I decided to test drive cars in the middle of the afternoon.  Not smart.  The heat got me so badly that I couldn’t even blog.  And I got to thinking about what this kind of heat does to the kidneys. I found the following article, e-published last summer online.  It explained quite a bit to me.

Heat-induced kidney ailments see 40% rise

Published: Tuesday, Jun 1, 2010, 15:41 IST
By Priya Adhyaru-Majithia | Place: Ahmedabad | Agency: DNA



Adversity is known to hit the down-trodden the most, but this summer, with its scorching sun and long list of heat-induced ailments, has spared no one. The latest development, say docs, is a massive increase in kidney failure and other kidney ailments, all caused by the heat.

A whopping 40% rise was noted in cases of kidney ailments in private hospitals, while government hospitals pegged the rise at 25%. Dr HL Trivedi of the Institute of Kidney Diseases and Research Centre (IKDRC) said, “There has been a manifold rise in cases of heat-induced temporary kidney failures this month. Rapid water loss causes the kidney’s functioning to slow down, resulting in temporary or permanent kidney failure.”

IKDRC confirmed about 25% rise in the number of cases this month. Priyadarshini Shah from IKDRC-ITS, said, “We usually get about 150 dialysis cases every day.However, a jump of about 25% has been noted this month.” And this figure does not include more than half of the total heat-induced temporary kidney ailment cases that are corrected either with oral medication or intravenous treatments.

Extreme heat causes rapid water loss, resulting in acute electrolyte imbalance. The kidney, unable to cope with the water loss, fails to flush out the requisite amount of Creatinine and other toxins from the body. Coupled with a lack of consistent water intake, this brings about permanent or temporary kidney failure, explain experts.

Dr Shailesh Shah, a urologist with Kidneyline hospital, said, “Due to heatstroke and water imbalance, an increase of about 20% has been noted in cases referred for dialysis, and of about 40% in heat-induced temporary kidney failure requiring intensive care.” Complaints of kidney blockage due to stones and bleeding while passing urine, have also registered a rapid rise, informed Shah.

Commenting on this sudden increase, Dr. Himanshu Patel, a nephrologist, said, “The heat has also caused cases of Myoglobinuria – the presence of myoglobin in the urine, usually associated with muscle destruction, to increase.”

Experts explain that symptoms of chronic kidney ailments and heat-induced kidney problems are different. Dr. Pranjal Modi, a kidney specialist, said, “Without adequate water intake, kidneys cannot function. Excessive perspiration and faster water loss due to exposure to the heat can cause diarrhoea, nausea and electrolyte imbalance, which often results in heat-induced kidney ailments. Here, a basic symptom of chronic kidney failure i.e. swelling, is not present.” 


The article can be viewed directly at: and is from “Daily News & Analysis.”
While this is not India, there are still parts of the country that will experience extreme heat so be careful to avoid it as much as possible by staying in air conditioning, out of direct sunlight and being sure to drink your 64 ounces each day.  Although heat induced kidney failure and CKD are not the same, both require that you drink  enough water.  To quote Dr. Modi from the article, “Without adequate water intake, kidneys cannot function.”
Enjoy your weekend, stay out of the sun, keep drinking and until Tuesday,
Keep living your life.
Published in: on May 14, 2011 at 10:30 am  Leave a Comment  

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