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This blog is another opportunity to feel grateful and thank you dear Universe: You continue to bless me with recovery and overall health.
Can you imagine being on a diet plan with almost no salt and proteins for almost a year? Yes, I experienced it post getting diagnosed with Membranous Glomerulonephritis (considered a rare kidney-related disease with no cure. With Membranous Glomerulonephritis the filters of the kidneys that are responsible to clean waste products from the blood are attacked by the body’s immune system which causes inflammation and swelling and ultimately affects the overall functionality).
It was not an easy diagnosis as the symptoms were quite silent in their appearance for a long time. Busy with the hustle and bustle of life, I kept taking symptomatic treatments here and there until it came under the scanner post thorough clinical tests were conducted. I also discovered suffering from a rare disease, Isaacs’ Syndrome (a neuromuscular condition stemming from muscle hyperactivity), and also Lyme disease (a bacterial illness transmitted by ticks), and Glaucoma (which damages the optic nerve).
Typically, we take a lot many things for granted, isn’t it? In my understanding, kidneys were a pair of organs located somewhere toward the lower back that functions to filter blood and remove toxins, that’s it but my experience was not that simple.
Symptoms of Membranous Glomerulonephritis and its effect on my life:
Most people might understand Kidney infections and stones easily as they are among the most common diseases, but only a few might know about certain chronic kidney-related ailments that could add further body-function complexities like fluctuations of water and acid balance in the body, blood pressure, and Vit D levels. The story doesn’t end there, I even had Frothy urine, Loss of appetite, continuous fatigue, and woke up more often to urinate during night time. The symptoms added further complications for the doctors as they intermingled with my other diagnosis.
I underwent the following clinical tests to confirm the diagnosis:
- Urine Albumin
- Lipid panel
- Blood Protein
- Urine Protein
- Kidney Biopsy: this was the last resort where a sample of kidney tissue was taken and tested in two different labs before the diagnosis was confirmed.
As the diverse symptoms intermingled with each other and were associated with my Neurological condition, the doctors concluded the cause to be:
- It developed due to the presence of other underlying health issues like Isaacs’ Syndrome, an autoimmune disorder
- Past history of consuming certain high-potency medicines the preparation of which used heavy Metals which might have caused kidney damage
- My associated history of immune system infections
The most difficult part post-diagnosis:
- Was prescribed almost a no Salt diet
- Let go of all my favourite food
- The chronic ailment was filtering the limited protein from the blood into urine which added further to my body’s weakness, weight and muscle loss
The presence of protein levels in my urine sample was high and even the kidney biopsy reports mentioned the progressive disease therefore the treatment was based on controlling the symptoms and protecting the kidneys from further damage. I was prescribed Blood-thinning medicines for blood clots, lowering cholesterol levels, immunosuppressants, and Blood pressure pills. Changes were more specific to following a rigid diet plan focused on reducing the intake of protein and salt.
Further treatments that proved helpful:
The oppressive nature of allopathic treatment led me to trying several alternative therapies, including Ayurveda. Ayurvedic medicines are known to be useful in treating various health conditions emphasizing the importance of harmony within the body. Kidneys are seen as an essential organ responsible for a lot of functions being interconnected with other organs therefore the doctors prescribed a set of medicines under strict vigilance to improve kidney health.
Also, the following therapies played a silent role in their respective ways as a part of the holistic healing regime from Membranous Glomerulonephritis:
Naturopathy: the following home remedies were a part of my daily menu as they are loaded with properties that help reduce inflammation, and urinary and body infections. They contain antioxidant and antibacterial properties and are rich in minerals.
- Coconut Water
- Vegetable juice
Lifestyle changes including diet: this is one of the most important aspects of all. I was asked to follow a strict diet and lifestyle disciplinary regime to see results.
- Lower my Blood Pressure
- Fluid control
- Keep a check on the Sodium levels, have minimum salt
- Say no to junk food and sugar
- Moderate protein intake
Chiropractic care: it helped improve kidney function as the treatment included spinal manipulations and nerve organizing which worked on the entire nervous system to reduce overall inflammation.
Iyengar Yoga: it is a side-effect-free technique that is known to fix many issues silently. I was introduced to various asanas that strengthen the kidneys and proved extremely effective.
As per my Nephrologist’s prescription, I have to be careful throughout life about the intake of salt, intake medicines regularly, and get clinical tests until the disease and related symptoms are over. The lack of warning in Membranous Glomerulonephritis means regular monitoring of the lipid profile to prevent further damage. Due to other rare and chronic medical conditions, I was strictly advised to thoroughly investigate before initiating any other form of prescription.
In my experience that any and every step toward relief mattered.
The views expressed above in this article are the author’s own and do not represent any kind of medical advice.