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Itchy Skin and Chronic Kidney Disease

Itchy Skin and Chronic Kidney DiseaseOne of the unpleasant experience for CKD patients are skin problems and the major two common skin problems are dry skin and itchy skin. Knowing how itchy skin and Chronic Kidney Disease connected and how to manage the problem can help keep skin as good as possible.

What is Itchy Skin?

Itchy Skin: Itchy skin is an uncomfortable, irritating sensation that can make scratching irresistible. It seems simple, but it may turn over your life and make you upset all the time. Sometimes, itchy skin may also be followed by rough skin, blisters, redness or bumps etc.

How Are Dry, Itchy Skin and Chronic Kidney Disease Connected?

Itchy Skin and CKD

A major cause for itchy skin in CKD patients is high phosphorus level in blood. Kidneys, in normal conditions, work to remove the excessive phosphate in blood. When kidneys cannot function well, the phosphate will build up in blood.

Many dialysis patients also complain of itching, even though dialysis works as renal replacement treatment. Why? Because dialysis only removes the small sized waste products, it does not effectively remove phosphates.

Another cause for itchy skin in CKD patients is allergies. It usually happens in patients on dialysis. If you have an allergy to the dialyzer, blood tubing etc, you may feel the itching at the begging of dialysis.

How to Treat Itchy Skin?

The key to treat itchy skin in CKD patients are how to lower the high phosphorus levels and how to manage the allergies.

Lower High Bosphorus Level

Chinese Herbal Medicine: Chinese Herbal Medicine help repair the damaged kidney tissues and improve kidney functions. As long as kidneys can work better, they will remove the excessive phosphate in the blood. The herbal formula differs from individual conditions. If you have interest, you can Get Personalized Herbs List from Our Free TCM Professor

Phosphorus Binder: Phosphorus binders prevent the body from absorbing the phosphorus from the food you eat. Phosphorus binders help to pass excess phosphorus out of the body in the stool, reducing the amount of phosphorus that gets into the blood.

Low-Phosphorus Diet: Phosphorus is common in most foods. For patients with itchy skin, they are suggested to take low-Phosphorus diet. Phosphorus is abundant in protein foods such as meats, dairy products, nuts and dried beans. Other common high-phosphorus foods include cola drinks, canned and processed foods containing phosphate ingredients and chocolate. Thereby, patients are suggested to avoid the mentioned foods.

Manage the Allergies

If you feel itching at the beginning of dialysis, please let your doctor or nurse know so changes can be made.

Also you are suggested to consult herbalist who can help you find the natural herbs which can alleviate the allergies caused by dialysis.

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