Discharge Instructions for Acute Kidney Injury

You have been diagnosed with acute kidney injury. This means that your kidneys are not working properly. When both kidneys are healthy, they help filter out fluid and waste from the blood and body. Acute kidney injury has many causes. These include urinary blockages, infection, lack of enough blood supply, and medicines that can injure kidneys. In some cases, acute kidney injury is short-term (temporary), lasting several days to a few months. This is because the kidney can repair itself. But acute kidney injury can also result in chronic kidney disease or end stage renal failure. Here are some instructions for you to follow as you recover.

Home care

  • Follow any instructions for eating and drinking given to you by your healthcare provider.

    • Drink less fluid, if instructed by your healthcare provider.

    • Keep a record of everything you eat and drink.

  • Measure the amount of urine and stool you have each day.

  • Weigh yourself every day, at the same time of day, and in the same kind of clothes. Keep a daily record of your daily weights.

  • Take your temperature every day. Keep a record of the results.

  • Learn to take your own blood pressure. Keep a record of your results. Ask your healthcare provider when you should seek emergency medical attention. Your provider will tell you which blood pressure reading is dangerous.

  • Avoid contact with people who have infections (colds, bronchitis, or skin conditions).

  • Practice good personal hygiene. This is especially important if you have a catheter in place when you leave the hospital. Doing so helps keep you safe from infection.

  • Take your medicines exactly as directed.

  • You may require frequent blood and urine tests to monitor your kidney function.

Follow-up care

Follow up with your healthcare provider, or as advised.

When to seek medical care

Call your healthcare provider right away if you have any of the following:

  • Signs of bladder infection (urinating more often than usual, or burning, pain, bleeding, or hesitancy when you urinate)

  • Signs of infection around your catheter (redness, swelling, warmth, or drainage)

  • Rapid weight loss or weight gain, such as 3 pounds or more in 24 hours or 6 pounds or more in 7 days

  • Fever above 100.4°F (38.0°C) or chills

  • Muscle aches

  • Night sweats

  • Very little or no urine output

  • Swelling of your hands, legs, or feet

  • Back pain

  • Abdominal pain

  • Extreme tiredness