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Bruises where kidneys are located, painful and swollen. Kidney infection?

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Could you please tell me why I would have bruises on my lower back right where my kidneys are located.. I'm pretty sure I have a kidney infection .. But wondering why these bruises popped up in the exact spot od then kidneys.. It's very painful too! I have all the symptoms of a kidney infection. Is this brusing a reason for me to be alarmed.. The area that is bruised on both sides feels like it swollen and on fire!!help!
Posted Wed, 25 Apr 2012 in Kidney Conditions
Answered by Dr. Avinash Ignatius 13 hours later

Thanks for posting your query.

I notice that you have Sjogren's and Lupus, both of which can involve the kidneys. However diseases of the kidney may cause some pain, but do not cause any rashes as they are situated XXXXXXX within. So the bruising is definitely not related to the kidneys.

However if you are on some medications for Lupus, it might predispose you to Herpes Zoster.
A picture of the bruising would be helpful. You have a feature to upload the reports / image by yourself at the right side of the query page, please utilize that so that I can answer your queries better.

To assess the kidneys, get tested with a Serum creatinine, Urine Routine and Microscopy and a Urinary protein and creatinine ratio.

Awaiting your response.


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Follow-up: Bruises where kidneys are located, painful and swollen. Kidney infection? 14 hours later
Thanks so much for your reply! I'll try take the photo..My other symptoms that I need to mention are these: headache, terrible unusual fatigue, low white count, persistant and constant urgency( even after just having gone) with nocturia, dribbling of urine, I have to strain to urinate sometkimes with just sitting there having to wait for urine to go ahead and come out, i guess you could say dimished flow of urine? ,swelling of lymph node in armpit, night sweats. I did see a urologist yesterday, not my regular dr though.. I gave a urine sample and he said it looked " good" he also did a check with ultrasound to see if my bladder was emptying and he said it was... He didn't do anything else.. But I requested he do a platelet count check on me.. they are fine.. 254,000 .. Are the tests you suggested ( serum creatinine etc.. ) basic routine tests that the urologist would have done yesterday on my urine? I have an appointment scheduled Tuesday with my regular urologist... Should I keep this appointment and request the tests you mentioned? Or do you think these tests were probably already done? During my 20 plus years having sjogren's and lupus I'm not aware of ever having detailed kidney function tests done.. Such as the 24 hour urine testing etc.. I also need to mention I have swelling when I wake up of my hands feet and face.. Which gets better as day goes on. Also my urine seems to have a strange sort of odor... urine is bubbly and looks like an oily yellow substance is mixed in too.. Maybe due to not drinking enough water? My whole body just feels " sick" .. Another question is do you think it necessary for me to see a nephrologist instead of urologist? Is the urologist not really equipped to know if kidneys are really fine. I assumed because of my intense fatigue, back pain, urgency, that a kidney infection would certainly be the cause but if the urine " looks good" then does that mean that there is absolutley no problems with the kidneys? Im just very concerned as to what could be going on.. My aunt as CLL( leukemia) my thoughts of that have also crossed my mind?? Any thoughts on cancers etc... Thank you so very much for taking the time help me! It's appreciated!
I hope to hear back from you so I'll know how to proceed.. I need to mention that I have orthostactic hypotension too.. Thx again! :-) mb
Answered by Dr. Avinash Ignatius 10 hours later
A Nephrologist primarily takes care of problems related to the kidneys, while an urologist essentially takes care of the urinary tract - i.e. the collecting system after the urine is formed (ureters, bladder, and urethra). In your situation you need an assessment by both.

Since you have lupus and Sjogrens, your symptoms do suggest the possibility of interstitial cystitis, an inflammation of the bladder which can occur with autoimmune diseases, such as lupus, or Sjögren's Syndrome.

Symptoms of interstitial cystitis include bladder frequency, bladder pain, low bladder capacity, and incontinence. Often, Interstitial Cystitis patients are wrongly treated for what their doctors assume must be bladder infections, urethritis, or "emotional" problems.

Repeated symptoms of urinary tract infections which do not show actual infection on testing are a hallmark symptom of interstitial cystitis. Interstitial Cystitis is largely a female problem, and urologists often deal largely with males.
People with any autoimmune disease are more susceptible to Interstitial Cystitis. Even many urologists, are unaware of or do not "believe" in interstitial cystitis. So you may need to show them some literature.
An urodynamic study (if not done) would help and a cystoscopy with a biopsy would confirm Interstitial Cystitis.

The tests I suggested earlier are likely to have been done by your urologist, except maybe the urine protein creatinine ratio (which is an accepted alternative to a 24hr urine collection).

However I would definitely suggest that you also get yourself evaluated by a Nephrologist.

Hope I have answered your query. Please accept my answer in case you do not have further queries.

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