Re: Stage 5 Kidney disease
Hello and welcome. Kidney failure can be such a complex issue. First off, the BUN in and of itself doesn't really say much and also doesn't have an upper limit. What it tells is partly how well the kidneys are functioning, and also how much protein the individual is eating. Other typically done tests are creatinine (which also tells roughly what stage you are at and also how well the kidneys are functioning) and electrolytes. The most important of these is potassium, and this level being too high can be dangerous. I'm sure you have heard that if you have a cramp in your lower leg you should eat a banana? Well often that cramp is due to low potassium and bananas are very high in it. However, that same sort of cramping can occur if the potassium is too high, and it can happen in the heart muscle. So an overall look at the labwork is important and seeing a renal dietitian is also very important so that the diet can be balanced with the lack of kidney filtering.
I know how scary dialysis can be. I was on for a year. You don't say how old your friend is. It does happen that folks who are older decide to not take treatment. Your friend should find out more about the various treatment options and also keep in mind that if he doesn't like it and/or feel better (you do need to give it a chance because it takes some time to get the prescription right) he can always stop. Most folks that start dialysis feel immensely better, although sometimes it does take a month or two to get used to.
Sorry I can't be more help, but feel free to ask lots of questions. I have done both hemo and peritoneal dialysis and have had a transplant now for almost 8 years.
Dxd T1 1966, 2001 dialysis, 2002 kidney transplant, 2003 insulin pump, 2008 pancreas transplant