Q. My veterinarian says my cat is in kidney failure, can you explain what that means?
DANA KOCH, VMD, MLAS
A. Chronic kidney failure is persistent azotemia for 3 or more months. Azotemia is an excess of urea nitrogen and/or creatinine. The first ability that is lost with the failing kidney is often the kidney’s ability to concentrate the urine. In a cat, the urine becomes both dilute and excessive when 66% of the kidney function has been lost. This change will precede the rise of metabolic waste in the blood (urea- creatinine) which occurs only when approximately 75% of the kidneys are lost. Kidney disease involves a loss of functional renal tissue due to a progressive process that is irreversible.
The aim of treatment is to slow the progression of the kidney's inability to remove excess metabolic waste. For more information: http://bit.ly/1A19OJw