Dr. Olatise Olalekan, a Nephrologist at Zenith Medical and Kidney Centre, Abuja, on Monday said renal failure in children has been linked to hereditary factors.
Olalekan told the News Agency of Nigeria in Abuja that HIV and AIDS, cancer, use of herbal medications, smoking and obesity could also be a major cause.
According to him, renal failure, also known as kidney failure or renal insufficiency, is a medical condition in which the kidneys fail to adequately filter waste products from the blood.
Olalekan said: “If a particular family have kidney failure issues in family, there is every probability that others in the family may have kidney diseases.
“Such family needs to go for regular routine medical check up to ensure that they don’t have the diseases.”
Olalekan said diabetes and high blood pressure were other leading causes of chronic kidney disease in adults, adding that they can also lead to chronic kidney disease in children.
He said once the kidneys are damaged, they gradually lose their capacity to remove waste products from the blood.
He said: “Kidney disease also increases the risk of heart and blood vessel disease.
“The problems may develop slowly or over a long period of time and often without symptoms.
“Chronic kidney disease may eventually lead to kidney failure and require dialysis or kidney transplant.
“Early detection and treatment may prevent the disease from getting worse and prevent some of its complications.”
Olalekan said symptoms of the diseases could vary from person to person as someone in the early stage of the disease may not feel sick or notice symptoms as they occur.
Olalekan said the symptoms of kidney failure could include high levels of urea in the blood, which can result in vomiting or diarrhoea, which may lead to dehydration, nausea and weight loss.
He said others are more frequent urination, usually with pale urine, less frequent urination or in smaller amounts than usual, with dark coloured urine.
Olalekan said depending on the underlying cause, some types of kidney disease can be treated.
He said: “Often, chronic kidney disease has no cure.
“In general, treatment consists of measures to help control signs and symptoms, reduce complications and slow progression of the disease.
“If your kidneys become severely damaged, you may need treatment for end-stage kidney disease.
“If your kidneys can’t keep up with waste and fluid clearance on their own and you develop complete or near-complete kidney failure, you have end-stage kidney disease.
“It means dialysis or a kidney transplant is needed.”
Olalekan advised Nigerians to avoid pain killers not prescribed by their doctors, adding that they should check their blood pressure and blood sugar level regularly.