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The Kidney Failure Glossary R – Z

R


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renal (REE-nuhl): of or relating to the kidneys. a renal disease is a disease of the kidneys. Renal failure means the kidneys are damaged.

renal osteodystrophy (REE-nuhl) (OSS-tee-oh-DISS-troh-fee): weak bones caused by chronic kidney disease-mineral and bone disorder. Renal osteodystrophy is a common problem for people on dialysis who have high phosphate levels or insufficient vitamin D supplementation.

renal pelvis (REE-nuhl) (PEL-viss): the basin into which the urine formed by the kidneys is excreted before it travels to the ureters and bladder.

renin (REE-nin): a hormone made by the kidneys that helps regulate the volume of fluid in the body and blood pressure.

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S


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semipermeable membrane (SEM-ee-PUR-mee-uh-buhl) (MEMbrayn): a thin sheet, or layer, of tissue that lines a body cavity or separates two parts of the body. A semipermeable membrane can act as a filter, allowing some particles to pass from one part of the body to another while keeping other particles in place. In hemodialysis, the artificial membrane in a dialyzer acts as the semipermeable membrane filtering waste products from the blood. In peritoneal dialysis, the peritoneum acts as the semipermeable membrane.

semipermeable membrane
Semipermeable membrane

sodium (SOH-dee-uhm): a mineral and electrolyte found in the body and in many foods.

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T


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thrill: a vibration or buzz that can be felt in an arteriovenous fistula, an indication that blood is flowing through the fistula.

transplant (TRANZ-plant): replacement of a diseased organ with a healthy one. A kidney transplant may come from a living donor, often a relative, or from someone who has just died.

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U


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UACR (YOO-AY-SEE-AR): see urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio.

UF (YOO-EF): see ultrafiltration.

ultrafiltration (UF) (UHL-truh-fil-TRAY-shuhn): in dialysis, the process by which fluid from the blood passes through a semipermeable membrane into a dialysis solution. In peritoneal dialysis, UF is measured as the volume of solution drained at the end of an exchange minus the volume of solution filled at the beginning of the exchange.

urea (yoo-REE-uh): a waste product found in the blood that results from the normal breakdown of protein in the liver. Urea is normally removed from the blood by the kidneys and then excreted in the urine. Urea accumulates in the body of people with kidney failure.

urea reduction ratio (URR) (yoo-REE-uh) (ree-DUHK-shuhn) (RAY-shee-oh): a blood test that compares the amount of blood urea nitrogen before and after dialysis to measure the effectiveness of the dialysis dose.

uremia (yoo-REE-mee-uh): the illness associated with the buildup of urea in the blood because the kidneys are damaged. Symptoms include nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, weakness, and mental confusion.

ureters (YOOR-uh-turz): tubes that carry urine from the kidneys to the bladder.

urethra (yoo-REE-thruh): the tube that carries urine from the bladder to the outside of the body.

urinalysis (YOOR-ih-NAL-ih-siss): a test of a urine sample that can reveal many problems of the urinary tract and other body systems. The sample may be observed for color, cloudiness, and concentration; signs of drug use; chemical composition, including glucose; the presence of protein, blood cells, or germs; or other signs of disease.

urinary tract (YOOR-ih-NAIR-ee) (trakt): the system that takes wastes from the blood and carries them out of the body in the form of urine. The urinary tract includes the kidneys, renal pelvises, ureters, bladder, and uretha.

Illustration of the urinary tract
Urinary tract

urinate (YOOR-ih-nayt): to release urine from the bladder to the outside of the body.

urine (YOOR-in): liquid waste product filtered from the blood by the kidneys, stored in the bladder, and expelled from the body through the urethra by the act of urinating. See urinate.

urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio (UACR) (YOOR-in) (al-BYOO-min) (too) (kree-AT-ih-neen) (RAY-shee-oh): a measurement that compares the amount of albumin with the amount of creatinine in a urine sample. A patient has chronic kidney disease if the UACR is over 30 milligrams (mg) of albumin for each gram (g) of creatinine (30 mg/g).

URR (YOO-AR-AR): see urea reduction ratio.

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V


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vascular access (VASS-kyoo-lur): a general term to describe where blood is removed from and returned to the body during hemodialysis. A vascular access may be an arteriovenous fistula, an arteriovenous graft, or a catheter. See hemodialysis under dialysis.

vein (vayn): a blood vessel that carries blood toward the heart.

venous line (VEE-nuhss) (lyn): in hemodialysis, tubing that carries blood from the dialyzer back to the body. See hemodialysis under dialysis.

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Page last updated: March 23, 2012


 

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