chronic renal failuremedical dictionary

<nephrology> Chronic renal failure represents a slow decline in kidney function over time. Chronic renal failure may be caused by a number of disorders which include long-standing hypertension, diabetes, congestive heart failure, lupus or sickle cell anaemia. If renal function declines to a low enough level (end-stage renal disease) kidney dialysis may be necessary. A sudden decline in renal function may be triggered by a number of acute disease processes.

Examples include sepsis (infection), shock, trauma, kidney stones, kidney infection, drug toxicity (aspirin or lithium), poisons or toxins (drug abuse) or after injection with an iodinated contrast dye (adverse effect). Both forms of renal failure result in a life-threatening metabolic derangement.

(27 Sep 1997)