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Transcript: "Are there Medications to Control Kidney Disease?"

Narrator: A doctor speaks with a patient in his office.

Patient: Are there medications for kidney disease?

Doctor: Well, most people with diabetes or high blood pressure, which are the major causes of chronic kidney disease, are on a number of medications. They are on medications to lower blood sugar if they have diabetes. They are on medications frequently for blood cholesterol, and they may be on other medications. Controlling high blood pressure is very important. And most people with chronic kidney disease require several medications. Among the medicines that we use to control blood pressure are two kinds of medicines that have a specific benefit to the kidney. They not only lower blood pressure but they are actually known to protect the kidney from damage. Those medications are either ACE inhibitors or angiotensin receptor blockers, also known as ARBs. Many people with chronic kidney disease benefit from being on these medications among all the other medications that they might be on.

Patient: What about a water pill?

Doctor: Well, many people with chronic kidney disease and high blood pressure are on what's known as a water pill. The medical name is a diuretic.And it's actually not a water pill; it's a pill to help your kidney get rid of salt. And as it gets rid of salt, the water follows. People can avoid having to take a water pill or diuretic or may be able to reduce their dose if they're careful about the amount of salt that they eat.

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