RENAL DISEASES

Kidneys are the organs of the urinary system. They serve as the body’s filters that remove waste products from the body and regulate the water balance. If the kidneys’ function is seriously damaged, this causes the development of various renal diseases such as nephritis, pyelonephritis, nephrolithiasis, pyonephrosis (purulent inflammation of the kidney), hydronephrosis (“water inside the kidney”), renal failure, kidney cancer.

Nephritis (nephro – combining form denoting kidney) is a group of inflammatory renal diseases. The most common type of nephritis is glomerulonephritis. It is the inflammation of the glomeruli, small round filters located in the kidney. Glomerulonephritis usually develops a few weeks after a streptococcal infection of the throat or skin. The symptoms of glomerulonephritis are fatigue, high blood pressure, swelling of the face, hands, ankles and feet. With proper medical treatment, symptoms usually subside within a month.

Pyelonephritis (pyel(o) – combining form denoting the pelvis of the kidney) is an ascending infection of the kidney, caused by bacteria that penetrates into the urinary tract from outside through the urethra. It may also ensue in the course of such concomitant diseases as cystitis in women, glomerulonephritis, or urinary stone disease (urolithiasis). Pyelonephritis can be acute or chronic.

Acute pyelonephritis often begins suddenly with chills. The patient has the general set of symptoms: malaise, headache, profuse sweating, nausea and vomiting. Then, the fever raises rapidly up to 39-40 °C. It is usually accompanied with the dull pain in the loins on the side of the affected kidney. The urine is cloudy and bloody due to the presence of bacteria, protein, and erythrocytes in it. Chronic pyelonephritis results from the undertreated acute form of the disease. It is often asymptomatic and can be detected only by means of urinalysis or if the patient has persistent hypertension. In chronic pyelonephritis, the normal renal tissue is replaced by the connective non-functional one. The kidney becomes small and scarred that leads to renal failure. Among other complications are pyonephrosis and urosepsis (presence of urine waste products throughout the body).

Nephrolithiasis (nephro – meaning kidney, lithi – meaning stone), or renal calculi, is another renal disease. Its manifestations are extremely variable. In many cases, stones are carried in the kidneys for years without producing any symptoms. Sometimes, a mild infection develops in the pelvis around a tiny stone. If the stone is large, or several are present, the infection may result in the destruction and ultimate loss of the kidney. The size of a calculus varies from very small gravel to a large stag-horn stone which can fill the renal pelvis. The biggest risk factor for kidney stones is not drinking enough fluids. Kidney stones are more likely to occur when less than 1 liter of urine is produced during a day.



Migration of a stone can cause obstruction with resultant stasis and infection. Persistent or repeated obstruction leads to pyonephrosis or hydronephrosis. When a stone enters and obstructs the ureter, renal colic occurs. There may also appear nausea, vomiting, perspiration, frequency or urgency of urination, etc.

To reveal any renal disease, a full urological investigation must be carried out. It includes urinalysis that detects such signs of urinary tract infection as haematuria, albuminuria, bacteriuria, etc.; a urine test strip that reveals the presence of leukocytosis; blood tests; microbiological culture of the urine and antibiotic sensitivity testing.

If timely revealed and treated, renal diseases can be successfully cured with the return of the normal kidney function.

Exercise 7. Answer the questions:

1. What is the main function of the kidneys?

2. What does the renal damage cause?

3. How is a group of inflammatory renal diseases called?

4. What is glomerulonephritis? What are its manifestations?

5. What are the causes of pyelonephritis?

6. How are the acute and chronic forms of pyelonephritis manifested?

7. What are the complications of pyelonephritis?

8. What is nephrolithiasis? What is the risk factor of the disease?

9. What does the migration of a renal calculus lead to?

10. How can renal diseases be revealed?

Exercise 8. Match the English word-combinations with their Ukrainian equivalents:

1. to produce urine a) стійка гіпертонія
2. affected kidney b) тест-смужка для аналізу сечі
3. variable manifestations c) легка інфекція
4. mild infection d) уражена нирка
5. stag-horn stone e) подальший застій
6. urine test strip f) розгалужений камінь
7. resultant stasis g) виробляти сечу
8. persistent hypertension h) різні прояви



Exercise 9. Complete the sentences with the appropriate words / word-combinations:

urgency of urination, perspiration, hematuria, bacteriuria, cloudy, renal colic, swelling, albuminuria,

1. When a renal calculus enters the ureter and obstructs it, __________ __________ appears.

2. Presence of bacteria in urine is called __________ .

3. Abnormal enlargement of face, hands or feet due to excess water in the body is known as __________.

4. The excretion of fluid through the sweat glands of the skin is called __________ .

5. When urine is not transparent or clear, it is __________ .

6. When the urine contains a large amount of proteins, it is called __________ .

7. The constant need to pass urine is also known as __________ _____ ___________.

8. Presence of blood cells in urine is a sign of __________ .

Exercise 10. Guess the renal / urinary disease:

1. malignant tumour of a kidney that leads to death;

2. purulent inflammation of a kidney;

3. presence of stones in the kidney;

4. inflammation of small round filters, located in the kidneys;

5. accumulation of fluid in the renal pelvis due to outflow obstruction;

6. ascending renal infection caused by bacteria that penetrates through the urethra;

7. inability of the kidneys to perform their functions;

8. penetration of urine waste products into the blood.

Exercise 11. Find synonyms to the following word-combinations in the text:

1. renal filters

2. accompanying disease

3. kidney insufficiency

4. excessive sweating

5. high blood pressure

6. edema of feet

7. kidney stones

8. blockage of ureter

Exercise 12. Translate the words in italics into English:

1. Пошкоджені гломерули do not filter the blood properly.

2. If there is a (an) запалення нирок, they cannot function normally.

3. Kidneys are our body’s filters which видаляють відходи from the blood.

4. Renal calculi can be carried for years не викликаючи жодних симптомів.

5. The most common symptom for all renal diseases is набряк обличчя, рук та ніг.

6. The majority of pyelonephritis occurs due to bacteria that cause other супутні хвороби.

7. Постійна закупорка сечоводу with a calculus can lead to подальшого застою та інфекції.

8. Before treating glomerulonephritis, the doctor carried out аналіз на чутливість до антибіотиків.

Exercise 13. Say whether the following statements are true or false. If they are false, correct them:

1. Any kidney disease can be revealed with a urinalysis.

2. Hematuria implies the presence of proteins in the urine.

3. Glomerulonephritis is the inflammation of the renal pelvis.

4. In pyonephrosis there is no pus accumulating in the kidney.

5. Persistent hypertension is a sign of chronic pyelonephritis.

6. The urine can be cloudy because of the presence of bacteria in it.

7. A stag-horn renal calculus doesn’t occupy the whole renal pelvis.

8. If a man drinks a lot of water, he is at risk of developing renal calculi.

Exercise 14. Insert the preposition where necessary:

1. Following … a strict diet means to avoid spicy and fatty food.

2. The patient experienced dull pain … the side of the affected kidney.

3. The presence of urine waste products … the body leads … urosepsis.

4. Some of genitourinary diseases are accompanied … painful urination.

5. The urinalysis was carried … yesterday, so you’ll find out your results soon.

6. The treatment of pyelonephritis consists … removing the underlying cause.

7. He bent forward to pick up the pill and suddenly felt burning pain … the loins.

8. To prevent the disease … recurrence, it is necessary to complete the course of treatment.

Exercise 15. Put questions to the underlined words:

1. Chronic pyelonephritis leads to kidney failure.

2. Two forms of pyelonephritis are distinguished.

3. Pyelonephritis implies an ascending urinary tract infection.

4. Bacteria causing the UTI penetrate into the body through urethra.

5. Cystitis, glomerular nephritis, urorolithiasis may result in pyelonephritis.

6. The signs of urinary tract infections are haematuria, albuminuria, bacteriuria.

7. Appropriate antibiotics relieve the inflammatory process in the kidney.

8. The urine is cloudy and bloody as there are bacteria, protein, and erythrocytes in it.

Exercise 16. Re-write sentences using the appropriate tense form. Translate them:

1. Purulent inflammation of kidney (to know) as pyonephrosis.

2. Persistent hypertension (to indicate) the problems with kidneys.

3. He (to suffer) from obtuse pain in the loins since last month.

4. People with renal pathologies (should, to avoid) spicy and fatty food.

5. The detection of pyelonephritis (to be) always possible due to urinalyses.

6. During the previous examination the patient (to complain) of painful urination.

7. The patient (to recover) quickly from pyelonephritis, if he (to complete) his treatment.

8. The onset of pyelonephritis (to accompany) with malaise, profuse sweating, nausea and vomiting.

Exercise17. Read and translate the sentences. Pay attention to the use of the pronouns one/ones. Say what function they perform in sentences:

1. Hard beds are healthier than soft ones.

2. These stretchers are broken. Take those ones.

3. I’ve lost my inhaler. I need a new one immediately.

4. Don’t put this white gown on, it's dirty. Put this one on.

5. If you haven’t got average syringes, small ones will also do.

6. Do you remember Dr. Green? – Is that the one who operated on me last year?

7. The doctor has asked me to bring another case history. This one is crumpled.

8. In chronic processes the normal organic tissue may be replaced by the non-functional one.

Exercise 18. Translate sentences into English using pronoun one/ones:

1. Ця історія хвороби вже заповнена, та – ще ні.

2. Ці пігулки однакові. Яку з них я маю прийняти?

3. Я розбила свій термометр, мені потрібен новий.

4. Права легеня складається з трьох доль, ліва – з двох.

5. Пієлонефрит – це бактеріальна хвороба, а не грибкова.

6. Лікар виписав мені антибактеріальні ліки, а також протизапальні.

7. Зараз він знаходиться у цій палаті, але згодом його переведуть до іншої.

8. Хронічні процеси призводять до заміщення функціональної тканини нефункціональною


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