Renal osteodystrophy facts*
*Renal osteodystrophy facts by John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP
- Renal osteodystrophy is a bone disease that occurs when your kidneys fail to maintain proper levels of calcium and phosphorus in the blood. It's common in people with kidney disease and affects most dialysis patients.
- Renal osteodystrophy is most serious in children because the condition slows bone growth and causes deformities and short stature.
- Symptoms of renal osteodystrophy aren't usually seen in adults until they have been on dialysis for several years. If left untreated, bones thin and weaken, and symptoms include bone and joint pain, and an increased risk of fractures.
- In a patient with kidney failure, the kidneys stop making calcitriol, a form of vitamin D. The body then can't absorb calcium from food and starts removing it from the bones.
- Treatment for renal osteodystrophy includes the drug cinacalcet hydrochloride (Sensipar), and synthetic calcitriol and calcium supplements. Proper diet and exercise can also help.
Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 4/3/2014