Diagnosis And Treatment

Peter took me to see the urologist this morning. This is the follow-up to my previous consultation with the doctor and to receive the results of the x-ray and ultrasound of my abdomen.

The diagnosis: I am suffering from hydronephrosis and atrophy of my left kidney. The flow of urine begins in the collection system of the kidneys. It then flows down the ureters to the bladder. Hydronephrosis is the dilation of the kidneys. This could be due to the collection system being obstructed, or when vesicoureteral reflux occurs.

Vesicoureteral reflux is the backflow of urine from the bladder into the kidneys, caused by a neurogenic bladder. I have a neurogenic bladder because of my spinal cord injury. The abnormal pressure in the kidney caused by the reflux and the stagnation of urine will damage and eventually cause the kidneys to fail.

The treatment: Continue with intermittent catheterisation. My bladder does not empty completely. I use a catheter to drain it to prevent a reflux. This I perform every three to four hours throughout the day. I am to take bladder antispasmodic medication to relax the bladder and to prevent it from involuntarily contracting. The bladder antispasmodic I was taking produced uncomfortable side effects such as drying of the eyes and mouth, blurred vision, decreased sweating and nausea.

I was also advised to prevent bladder infections by taking potassium citrate (pot cit) which will make my urine alkaline. Now, pot cit is the most awful tasting liquid I have ever taken, but that is a little discomfort I have to endure to continue maintaining my urinary system?s health.

Author: Peter Tan

Peter Gabriel Tan. Penangite residing in the Klang Valley. Blissfully married to Wuan. A LaSallian through and through. Slave to three cats. Wheelchair user since 1984. End-stage renal disease since 2017. Principal Facilitator at Peter Tan Training specialising in Disability Equality Training. Former columnist of Breaking Barriers with The Borneo Post. This blog chronicles my life, thoughts and opinions. Connect with me on Twitter and Facebook.

15 thoughts on “Diagnosis And Treatment”

  1. i recently had another kidney stone (renal calculi) episode. the the urologist did prescribe potassium citrate but it’s in the form of tablets though (urocit-k). is there any reason why he prescribed you in the liquid form?

  2. Most important is still regular self-catheterization. Keep it aseptic too. lots of discipline needed, but it is worth it in the long run.
    Keep strong.

  3. Meesh,
    Thanks for your good wishes. The catheter will feature very prominently in my life for the rest of it. I have been doing intermittent catherisation for the past twelve years. Thank God it is only once every three hours instead of indwelling.

    The urologist gave me a choice of potassium citrate mixture, Urocit-K (tablet) or Citravescent (effervescent). I am more familiar with the mixture because I have had lots of it going through my system for many years. I guess I am a little masochistic also.

    Just to help,
    I wonder if Citravescent tastes the same as Potcitra. Still, potassium citrate mixture will be my first choice to remind me to take better care of my urinary system, which I had neglected for a while now.

  4. Huajern,
    I agree that it takes a lot of discipline but I have gotten used to it after all these years. Just that my situation needs more than catheterisation. I stopped Ditropan for a while because of the adverse side effects which were interfering with my daily life. My bladder is overactive and I think I have to continue with some from of bladder antispasmodic to preserve whatever that is left of my renal function.

  5. Dear: Peter,
    How Are You ? I’m so sorry to hear that about catherisation. I hope you will Get well as soon as possible my friend. I will pray for you.
    One of our friend Aunty Annnie whom had also went thru a kidney operation and they have too take away one of her kidneys and now she still can eat whatever food she like but she also has to takee care of her health and the food she take.


  6. I’m glad that you did see a doctor now at least instead of much later. Will further atrophy stop or be delayed now with these new measures?

  7. Prema,
    Actually, I should go for an ultrasound every year but have deferred from 2000 till now. I sure hope the atrophy and hydronephrosis will be curtailed, or at least slowed down, now that I am back on medication again.

  8. you better take care of yourself 😛

    lol..oops..sounds more like a threat…

    i hope you get better soon though. this is why checkups are always so important. better find out now where you can treat it than to find out later when you can’t do anything about it anymore.

    you’ll get better. i know it! hehe take care peter:)

  9. Thanks Natasha. From now on, I will have to follow all scheduled consultations with the urologist to the dot. Better to be safe than crying over spilt milk.

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