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Acute renal failure

Updated: 2024-03-28


A condition in which the kidneys suddenly lose their ability to filter waste products from blood.


With acute renal failure, the kidneys lose their filtering ability. Dangerous levels of wastes may build up, and the blood's chemical makeup may get out of balance. The condition can be deadly without treatment. It also is called acute kidney failure.


Acute renal failure symptoms can include shortness of breath, tiredness and less urination. Other symptoms can include an irregular heartbeat, chest pain or pressure, seizures, and swelling of the legs, ankles or feet.


Treatment for acute renal failure involves treating the condition or injury that caused the kidneys to stop filtering blood. Medicines and other procedures may be needed to prevent complications.