Blood test – a blood test may be ordered to determine whether waste substances are being adequately filtered out. If levels of urea and creatinine are persistently high, the doctor will most likely diagnose end-stage kidney disease.
Urine test – a urine test helps find out whether there is either blood or protein in the urine.
Kidney scans – kidney scans may include a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scan, computed tomography (CT) scan, or an ultrasound scan. The aim is to determine whether there are any blockages in the urine flow. These scans can also reveal the size and shape of the kidneys – in advanced stages of kidney disease the kidneys are smaller and have an uneven shape.
Kidney biopsy – a small sample of kidney tissue is extracted and examined for cell damage. An analysis of kidney tissue makes it easier to make a precise diagnosis of kidney disease.
Chest X-ray – The aim of this test is to check for pulmonary edema (fluid retained in the lungs).
Glomerular filtration rate (GFR) – GFR is a test that measures the glomerular filtration rate – it compares the levels of waste products in the patient’s blood and urine. GFR measures how many milliliters of waste the kidneys can filter per minute. The kidneys of healthy individuals can typically filter over 90 ml per minute.