Frequently Asked Questions

Did you know? Many DNA physicians also have special areas of interest and care, such as uncontrolled hypertension and glomerulonephritis, to name a few.

Why am I being referred to DNA?

Tests conducted by your primary care provider indicate you may have abnormal kidney function. Early referral is important in preserving and protecting your kidney function.

Our physicians may request that you come to the office several days before your appointment for lab tests or you may be directed to a local lab more convenient for you. Doing so makes these test results available for review with you at the time of your first appointment.

Tests results and other pertinent medical information regarding your condition will be sent to your primary care provider. Should you have questions or problems prior to your first visit, call the office you will be visiting.

What is a nephrologist?

A nephrologist is a physician specializing in the diagnosis, treatment and management of kidney disease.  After completing a residency in Internal Medicine, they have completed a minimum two years additional training, focusing on diseases of the kidneys and related hypertension (high blood pressure).

How is a nephrologist different from an urologist?

A nephrologist specializes only in kidney care. An urologist is a surgeon who specializes in the urinary tract (kidneys, ureters, bladder, urethra and prostate).

What causes kidney disease or kidney failure?

The most common causes are diabetes and high blood pressure (hypertension). More information can be found in our “Services” section.

What can I do to make my kidneys better?

Lifestyle and diet changes are key. To prevent the progression of kidney disease, it’s important to control your blood pressure and blood sugars. Limit your intake of salt and fats. Keep your weight down, exercise and stop smoking. Our staff will discuss what you can do to make better food choices.

Does every patient with kidney disease go on dialysis?

No. There are an estimated 20,000,000 Americans with some degree of kidney disease while approximately 400,000 require dialysis on a routine basis.

How will I know when it’s time for me to start dialysis?

This varies from patient to patient. The decision to start dialysis is based on a patient’s symptoms and laboratory tests.

Symptoms such as nausea, loss of appetite, weight loss, and increased swelling may all signal worsening kidney function. Laboratory tests used to determine the need for dialysis include the Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR), creatinine, BUN, potassium, albumin and carbon dioxide levels. Your doctor may request more frequent monitoring of blood work.

How can I learn more about kidney disease?

DNA offers Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) education classes at locations around the metroplex. Patients and families are invited to attend. Additional information can be found on our website under Services and Resources.