The Symptoms of Congestion Of The Kidneys

Urine very abundant, pate, or scanty and high-colored; if scanty, containing albumen, and often blood; examination with a microscope shows casts; denoting catarrh of the kidneys; no pain.

Fig. 332. Congested Kidneys.

Fig. 332. Congested Kidneys.

The Causes of Congestion Of The Kidneys

Due to either increased pressure in the arteries, as from hypertrophy of the heart, or to obstruction of the venous circulation. The first cause occasions an abundant secretion of urine; the second, scanty, high-colored urine. The disease is also caused by the various causes mentioned as productive of congestion of the liver, especially by the free use of condiments, tobacco, tea and coffee, and alcoholic liquors, particularly raw whisky and beer. Lastly, as a common cause, may be mentioned the use of irritating diuretic remedies, and counterirritation by means of blisters and irritating salves.

The Treatment of Congestion Of The Kidneys

As a general rule, when the urine is scanty and high-colored, the abundant use of water as a drink should be prescribed. Two or three pints of water a day will be none too much for most patients. If the stomach is injured by this excess of cold fluid, the water may be taken quite hot, which will facilitate absorption. The wet-sheet pack, and vapor and hot-air baths, are indicated when the congestion is considerable, together with fomentations over the kidneys, the abdominal bandage worn constantly, and the application of electricity to the small of the back. The diet should consist chiefly of fruits and grains. The less animal food eaten, especially meat, the better. Coffee, tea, tobacco, condiments, and everything which will give the kidneys extra work must be most carefully avoided. The use of various powerful diuretics in these cases, a very common practice, is in the highest degree detrimental. The use of barley-water, slippery-elm water, linseed tea, and various other demulcent drinks, is perfectly harmless, but no more beneficial than the use of pure water.