Kidney bone disorders, also known as renal osteodystrophy, is a common problem associated with chronic kidney disease.  The good thing is that we know it can happen and we monitor your lab tests regularly to help you control this disorder.

Once you are at Stage III of chronic kidney disease you are at risk for this disorder.

What do the kidneys and bones have to do with one another?

We all remember Mom telling us to drink our milk for strong, healthy bones.  Our bones need calcium, phosphorus and Vitamin D to keep our bones strong.   Your body does make a hormone to help keep calcium and phosphorus in the bone called parathyroid hormone (many people call this “PTH”).

When your kidneys start to get sick it becomes hard for your body to keep calcium and phosphorus inside the bone.  “PTH” comes to the rescue and puts the calcium and phosphorus back inside of bone.  When “PTH” does this over a long period of time, you can get too much PTH in your blood.

Another problem is that Vitamin D, the kind we drink in milk, needs to get changed in the kidney before it can work in your body to help keep calcium and phosphorus in bones.   When your kidney gets sick, the kidney is less able to change the Vitamin D.

This is a very complex process all aimed at keeping your bones strong!

What blood tests do I need to see if my bones are OK?

Your doctor may order a calcium, phosphorus, Vitamin D and PTH level.  These tests are usually done every 3 months in patients with chronic kidney disease.

What can be done to help keep my bones healthy and strong?

Your doctor or PA will work with you to keep your calcium and phosphorus levels in an acceptable range.

You may also be referred to our kidney dietician to discuss how you can help with the foods you eat.  See our “Dietary Information” page for more information.

You may be prescribed some other medications to help with Vitamin D and PTH control.  These medications include:  (??maybe I should just link to patient assistance programs)

Calcium supplements:  Oscal, Tums, PhosLo

Phsophorus Controllers: Renvela

Regular Vitamin D: ergocalciferol, cholecalciferol

1,25 Vitamin D:  Zemplar, Hectoral, Rocaltrol

Parathyroid binder:  Sensipar

The following websites have more information for you concerning your kidney bone disorder.  We encourage you to ask us anything you do not understand.

Mineral and Bone Disorder

Mineral & Bone Disorder in Chronic Kidney Disease