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You can take steps to help lower the risk of progressing to ESRD:

  • Medicines are used to limit the amount of protein that leaks into the urine. They help slow the rate of kidney decline.
  • Keep your blood pressure in a normal range. Check your blood pressure regularly. You can do this at home. If you have high blood pressure, follow your care plan. This may include changing some lifestyle habits with or without medicine.
  • Keep track of your blood glucose level. It should be as close to normal as possible. Your doctor will check for diabetes during routine visits. If you have diabetes, follow your care plan. This may include changing some lifestyle habits and taking medicine.
  • Quit smoking. Smoking worsens chronic kidney disease. Ask your doctor about tools to help you quit.
  • Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) are commonly used for aches, pains, and fever. Using them too often can cause more harm to the kidneys. Talk to your doctor about other over the counter medicine you can use safely.


Chronic kidney disease (CKD) in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: . Updated January 18, 2019. Updated July 9, 2019.

Murphree DD, Thelen SM. Chronic kidney disease in primary care. J Am Board Fam Med. 2010;23(4):542-550.

O'Connor NR, Corcoran AM. End-stage renal disease: symptom management and advance care planning. Am Fam Physician. 2012;85(7):705-710.

What is kidney failure? National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases website. Available at: Updated January 2018. Accessed November 17, 2016.

Revision Information

  • Reviewer: EBSCO Medical Review Board Adrienne Carmack, MD
  • Review Date: 07/2019
  • Update Date: 10/04/2019