Many kidney diseases are treated with medication, such as steroids, DMARDs (disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs), antihypertensives (many kidney diseases feature hypertension). Often erythropoietin and vitamin D treatment is required to replace these two hormones, the production of which stagnates in chronic kidney disease.
When chronic kidney disease progresses to stage five, dialysis or transplant is required.
Sub-specialties within nephrology include interventional nephrologists who focus on access placement and maintenance, a dialytician who focus upon ordering dialysis for patients, and transplant nephrologists who focus on the acute or sub-acute monitoring of immunosuppression in the transplant patient.
If patients proceed to transplant, nephrologists will continue to follow patients to monitor the immunosuppressive regimen and watch for the infection that can occur post transplant.
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