Stage 3 Chronic Kidney Disease

What Is Stage 3 Chronic Kidney Disease?  The kidney is an organ of the human body and plays quite a significant role in its function. Mainly, it filters body waste and extra fluid from our blood, which is later eliminated in the form of urine.

However, chronic kidney diseases, which build up a high fluid level in our body, damage its functionality. One of these diseases is stage 3 CKD. Depending on the amount of waste the body produces, we often subdivide stage 3 into 3a and 3b.

Also see: What Are The 5 Stages Of Kidney Failure and Signs You May Have A Bad Liver.

Doctors divide CKD into five stages based on the results of the glomerular filtration rate test (eGFR) which assesses kidney function and the stage of the associated kidney disease.

In this article, we will focus on stage 3 CKD, which falls in the middle of the stage spectrum with a mean global prevalence of between 11 to 13 percent, where the majority of cases are of stage 3 [1]

Globally millions of people die from chronic kidney disease and 1.2 million died in 2017. [2] According to PAHO (Pan American Health Organization), CKD is the leading cause of mortality in America.  Whereas, in the case of global mortality, CKD is ranked 8th. [3] If you want to know more about stage 3 kidney disease, continue reading.

adult healthy kidney

Symptoms of stage 3 CKD 

Stages 1 and 2 of chronic kidney disease are commonly asymptomatic one may not feel symptoms during the first two stages of CKD.

In stage 3, the symptoms start appearing, which should not be ignored. These symptoms appear gradually with time as the disease progresses. Depending on the severity of level stage 3 CKD may show symptoms as follows [4] [5]

  1. Dark yellow, orange, or red urine: You should take especially red and orange urine colors seriously because they indicate infections or stones. This color change is due to abnormal protein or sugar accumulation leading to dark Coors of urine.
  2. You urinate more or less frequently than usual: This indicates that the kidney filters have damage, causing an urge to urinate.Sometimes it is also a symptom of a urinary tract infection.
  • Edema (fluid retention): During stage 3 of CKD kidney is unable to remove excess fluid from the body resulting in edema.
  1. Weakness and other anemic-like symptoms: Stage 3 is a level where significant kidney functions have been damaged, accumulating toxins and impurities in the blood that keeps a person tired and dizzy.
  2. Insomnia and other sleep issues: Disturbed circadian rhythm is a common symptom attached to chronic kidney disease.
  3. Increased blood pressure: kidney serves as regulating organ for blood pressure in the body, but in diseased conditions, this BP does not remain normal anymore.

With all of the above symptoms associated with CKD, some common symptoms include nausea, loss of appetite, muscle cramps, swelling of feet and ankles, etc.

Causes of stage 3 CKD 

The following are the causes that are considered to be associated with causing stage 3 chronic kidney disease CKD. [6]

  1. Type 1 or type 2 diabetes mellitus: High levels of sugar in blood from diabetes Type 1 and 2 damage the kidney’s vessels and basic functioning unit nephron leading to renal failure.

ii. Drugs and Alcohol: Excessive use of drugs and alcohol disturbs the functioning and filtration of the kidney.

  • High blood pressure: This condition narrows and constricts a person’s blood vessels, and as a result, damages the kidney vessels.
  1. Glomerulonephritis: A disease or condition characterized by the Inflammation of the kidney’s filtering units (glomeruli), mostly seen in people with a disturbed or weak immune system.
  2. Interstitial nephritis: This is the Inflammation of the spaces between the kidney’s tubules and nearby areas, also a cause of acute kidney dysfunction.
  3. Polycystic kidney disease: Families can pass down kidney diseases like PKD. This disease inflames the kidney because of the development of stones or cysts within it. Other inherited kidney diseases, such as ADPKD, also exist.
  • Prolonged urinary tract obstruction: Some conditions include kidney stones or enlarged prostrate due to obstruction or blockage in one or both ureters. Ureters are responsible for carrying urine from the kidney to the bladder.
  • Vesicoureteral reflux: An abnormal reflux condition in which urine goes back to the ureter connecting the kidney to the bladder.

When To See A Doctor For Stage 3 CDK?

Now that you are familiar with all the associated symptoms of stage 3 chronic kidney disease, it is easy to get to know what problem you have.

But for proper diagnosis, you should consult the doctor as soon as possible to prevent the gradual progression of the disease toward complete kidney failure. A doctor will draw results after testing the blood pressure and kidney function with urine. [6]


With medically prescribed medicines, taking preventive measures by yourself is essential to stop CKD from reaching the next stage. [7] These include:

  • Follow the medication cover instructions carefully: Take prescribed or non-prescribed medications (painkillers, aspirin, Ibuprofen) and others as prescribed by the doctor. Taking too much medicine leads to renal damage.
  • Maintain a healthy weight: stay physically active, and it would be even better if you want to lose weight.
  • Don’t smoke: Cigarette smoking can also cause kidney damage, so preventing smoking is a beneficial option.
  • Role of doctor and CKD management: A person who faces something abnormal with their kidney functioning or passes through urine, as well as any related disease that can put you at risk of having kidney disorder he/she should go immediately to the doctor. Ask your doctor about tests to look for signs of kidney damage.

Which Medical Treatments Are Prescribed By A Doctor?

Stage 3 CKD is not prescribed for dialysis or transplant like in the case of advanced stages 4 and 5. However, To prevent further damage or progress of stage 3, it is essential to take medications to treat underlying conditions causing the damage.

A doctor may prescribe you ACE (angiotensin-converting enzyme) inhibitors used for the relaxation of the veins and arteries ARB’s receptor blockers for treating high blood pressure are also responsible for the management of diabetes.

Sometimes, the doctor prescribes Kerendia or Finerenone, which minimizes the risk of sustained glomerular filtration rate decline, end-stage kidney disease, and death from cardio disease.

  • Other medicines to alleviate the effects of stage 3 chronic kidney disease are
  • Iron supplements for anemia condition resulting from CKD.
  • Calcium/vitamin D supplements to prevent bone fractures
  • Cholesterol-lowering drugs
  • Diuretics or water pills to get rid of body salt and to treat edema

What Is Stage 3 kidney Disease Life Expectancy?

If stage 3 chronic kidney disease is diagnosed earlier, the person has a longer life expectancy than that of more advanced stages of CKD.

However, this estimate may vary due to age and lifestyle differences. However, life expectancy also depends on the disease’s progression and risk factors, such as blood pressure or cardiovascular diseases, that lower the overall life expectancy. [8]


Chronic kidney diseases are prevalent nowadays due to problems like diabetes or high blood pressure. CDK can develop suddenly or due to some trauma that happened in the past.

It can have many possible causes linked with its high dehydration rate, kidney trauma, high level of medications, etc.

All population groups worldwide exhibit stage 3 of the five stages of kidney disorders. In order to inhibit the growth of the disorder from stage 3, one should consult with a doctor to determine the best treatment options as well as diet plans for health improvement.

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  1. Global Prevalence of Chronic Kidney Disease” – A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis – PubMed”
  2. “Global, regional, and national burden of chronic kidney disease, 1990-2017: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2017 – PubMed”
  3. “Burden of Kidney Diseases – PAHO/WHO | Pan American Health Organization”
  4. Stage 3 Kidney Disease: Symptoms, Treatment, Coping, and Outlook. (2020, February 7). Healthline.
  5. Chronic kidney disease – Symptoms and causes. (2021, September 3). Mayo Clinic.
  6. Facts About Chronic Kidney Disease. (2022, October 10). National Kidney Foundation.
  7. Preventing Chronic Kidney Disease. (2022, October 5). National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases.
  8. What Is Stage 3 Kidney Disease Life Expectancy? (2021, May 19). WebMD.





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