The kidneys are a pair of organs in your body found near your back, above the waistline on either side of your spine. Your kidneys are responsible for:
- balancing electrolyte levels
- maintaining proper water levels
- regulating body acids
- filtering blood of toxic wastes, which pass from the body in urine
Signs that your kidneys may be damaged or not working properly include:
- producing too much or too little urine
- urine discoloration (orange, red, or dark yellow)
- pain when urinating
- frequent urgent need to urinate
- fever or chills (signs of an infection)
- swelling in feet or ankles
- nausea or vomiting
- appetite loss
- becoming confused
- urinary tract infection
Some treatments for breast cancer can affect the kidneys, sometimes causing damage.
The following breast cancer treatments can have an affect on the kidneys:
- Avastin (chemical name: bevacizumab), a targeted therapy
- carboplatin (brand name: Paraplatin), a chemotherapy medicine
Some pain medications you may be taking during your breast cancer treatment also can have an effect on your kidneys, if taken for long periods of time or in large doses, including aspirin, ibuprofen (one brand name: Advil), naproxen (one brand name: Naprosyn), naproxen sodium (one brand name: Aleve), Orudis (chemical name: ketoprofen), Indocin (chemical name: indomethacin), Feldene (chemical name: piroxicam), and Relafen (chemical name: nabumetone).
If you have a history of kidney damage, talk to your doctor before taking any pain medications during breast cancer treatment
If you think you're experiencing kidney problems, contact your doctor immediately. Kidney damage can be very serious and should be treated as soon as possible.
For more tips, ask the members of the Breastcancer.org Discussion Boards for advice.