About to have nephrectomy

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I'm Chelsea, I'm 20 and I'm about to have my left kidney removed due to poor function and frequent severe kidney infections.

Basically I was wondering if anyone who has had this surgery could tell me what to expect in terms of recovery etc as I've already had my pre-op assessment and dont feel very clued up about it!

Thank you smile

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  • Posted

    Hello Chelsea

    It's a long time since you posted and I've only just come across this post. I do hope all went well with your surgery. I am 70 and had my left kidney removed when I was 12 after many childhood urine infections and hospitalised related illnesses! I never looked back and I hope you don't either. Best wishes.

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    • Posted

      Hi MrsO,

      I am new to this forum and just posted my story under kidney problems but I wanted to ask you after you had your kidney removed was the other functioning at 100% or was there a little decrease in function. I had mine removed last year at 43yrs old and just looking for some hope. I have no health problems other then developing "pots" after my nephrectomy. Upon discharge from the hospital my gfr was 71. This past November it went down as low as 48 and now it's back to 75!! Better then when I left the hospital .. For three months it stayed in the 50's and it really worried me. My nephrologist has run all blood work and urine and everything looks great other then a little high potassium? I see my dr again this Monday . He told me I have stage 3 CKD but can live a full normal life ? Hoping to move up to stage 2 ?

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    • Posted

      Hi Andrea

      ​As far as I'm aware, I never had any kidney problems whatsoever once my right kidney was removed.  I was led to believe that my right kidney had never worked properly since birth and that the other kidney had grown in size, probably owing to doing the work of two.  It was only very many years later following a long-term, undiagnosed therefore untreated, inflammatory condition that a blood test revealed an eGFR in the 50's (CKD3).  Since then my kidney function continues to reduce, very possibly because of battling high blood pressure which is proving difficult to control due to some BP meds causing unwanted side effects whilst others are causing worsening kidney function.

      ​If your eGFR now remains stable at 75, that is so encouraging.  I'm surprised that at that level your consultant has diagnosed CKD3, but probably he's taking your younger age into account, whereas in a much older person a lower reading down to 60 is probably accepted as being due to ageing.  Certainly my hubby and friends of my age all seem to have a reading of 60 and told their function is normal.

      ​I'm not a medic but just wondering whether your eGFR bouncing up and down last November is due to it being early days since your nephrectomy, and the remaining kidney taking time to properly stabilise having taken over the job of two kidneys. 

      ​With your raised potassium, if you eat many bananas, cutting them down may help.

      ​It might reassure you to know that when I was first diagnosed with CKD3, I contacted one of the online Labs for advice, and a helpful technician said he would expect anyone with only one kidney to have a slightly lower reading than someone with two kidneys.

      Stay well now and enjoy that "full normal life" the consultant has prescribed! 


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  • Posted

    Hello Chelsea,

    I am similar age to you and have just had my left kidney removed for pretty much the same reasons as you 4 weeks ago.

    I had laparoscopic surgery so I have healed well but I'm experiencing total exhaustion (after doing nothing!) and my body feels completely drained.

    Is this normal or not?


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    • Posted

      Hello Caz

      I do hope you receive a reply from Chelsea but as her post was over a year ago, there may be a possibility that she isn't 'looking in' any more.

      I'm so glad to hear that you have healed well after your recent left nephrectomy, and hope my reply to Chelsea at the time will help to reassure you for the future.

      As to whether it's "normal or not to feel total exhaustion", it is still very early days following major surgery/stress to your body and it will take some time to recover your usual equilibrium.  Meanwhile, do continue to rest as much as possible and don't overdo things on a 'good' day.  Hopefully, the weather is on your side at the moment and you can get out in the sunshine and fresh air for little walks.  Perhaps, your GP can prescribe some sort of tonic that may help but meanwhile eat plenty of  fresh veggies and fruit and other nourishng foods and drink plenty of water.  Guaranteed high quality Manuka honey is great for the immune system and has a whole host of other benefits.

      All good wishes.

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