Renal Arterial Disease Symptoms

Identifying renal arterial disease symptoms in a timely fashion can be a crucial step in ensuring you receive the treatment you need to stop the progression of this condition. Characterized by a narrowing of the arteries that provide blood flow to the kidneys, renal arterial disease – which is more commonly referred to as renal artery stenosis – can result in kidney damage or kidney failure if left untreated.

Renal artery stenosis is most often caused by the buildup of plaque on the walls of the blood vessels leading to the kidneys. Comprised of fat, calcium, cholesterol, and other materials, plaque causes the arteries to narrow and limits normal blood flow.

While it sometimes will not produce any warning signs, the more common symptoms of renal artery stenosis include:

  • High blood pressure – In cases where high blood pressure begins suddenly before age 30 or after age 55 and doesn’t respond to lifestyle changes or traditional medications, renal artery stenosis is a possible diagnosis.
  • Fluid retention – Ankle swelling or fluid in the lungs can sometimes point to the existence of renal artery stenosis.
  • Kidney failure – Elevated protein levels in the urine can be a sign of abnormal kidney function due to renal artery stenosis.

If your symptoms have led to a diagnosis of renal arterial disease, there is an assortment of treatment options at your disposal. Cholesterol and blood pressure medications, combined with healthy lifestyle changes, are often the first step in a treatment plan for renal artery stenosis. If this course of action proves ineffective, there are several surgical options as well.

At Tampa General Hospital, our team of heart and vascular specialists utilizes a state-of-the-art, 77,000-square-foot cardiovascular center to treat a full array of cardiovascular conditions, including renal arterial disease.