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Home > Personal Injury > Industrial Diseases > Kidney disease - Renal failure

Kidney disease - Renal failure

Occupational renal disease caused by toxic substances in the workplace

Although kidney disease can be caused by factors other than in the workplace, there are risks in some occupations that can result in either acute kidney disease or chronic kidney disease. The two main causes of kidney disease outside the workplace are high blood pressure or diabetes. If you are suffering from kidney disease and have not been diagnosed with either of those conditions, it is possible that you have been exposed to a hazardous substance in the workplace.

If you have been exposed to toxic substances in the workplace and have received medical advice to the effect that this has caused you to experience health problems, such as kidney disease, you may be able to bring a claim for damages, otherwise known as compensation.

UK charity has reported a rise in type-2 diabetes

The charity Diabetes UK has reported a rise in type-2 diabetes of nearly 130,000 in the past year alone. The national figure for type-2 diabetes sufferers now stands at 2.9million.

Unlike type-1 diabetes, which is an autoimmune disease causing the destruction of insulin-producing cells and which affects only 10% of all sufferers, type-2 diabetes is linked to lifestyle.

Diabetes UK points out in the report that individuals who are overweight are more likely to develop the condition and “Losing 10% of your weight reduces your chances of developing type-2 diabetes by 50%”.
More about A UK charity has reported a rise in type-2 diabetes

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Kidney disease - important information

Please select one of the links below to see how Clear Answers specialist occupational disease lawyers may be able to help you make a claim for personal injury compensation.

Kidney disease - renal failure

On either side of the body, beneath the main ribcage, the role of the kidneys is to filter waste products from the blood before converting them into urine. Bean-shaped organs, they help to maintain:

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Clear Answers' specialist personal injury lawyers

If you have been exposed to toxic substances in the workplace and have received medical advice to the effect that this has caused you to experience health problems, such as kidney disease, you may be able to bring a claim for damages, otherwise known as compensation. Please seek expert legal advice if you think you may have a valid industrial disease compensation claim as strict time limits apply.

Clear Answers' personal injury advice lawyers specialise in all types of industrial injury claims, but have particular experience in dealing with compensation claims involving exposure to hazardous substances, resulting in kidney damage or renal failure.

Please visit our section on information and advice for more details on making a personal injury compensation claim.

Telephone us now on 0800 783 9019 or complete one of our online compensation claim forms and a representative will contact you as soon as possible.

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Substances that can cause kidney disease

Metals such as lead, cadmium, mercury, arsenic and uranium are heavy metals that are used in some industries. They are classed as nephrotoxins (substances that cause inflammation of the kidney - nephritis).

Other substances such as silica (considered a metal but not a heavy metal), certain organic compounds such as halogenated hydrocarbons that are employed as industrial solvents, can also be responsible for developing kidney disease.

Many substances are capable of causing harm because they are ingested without obvious signs of exposure. Breathing contaminated air, drinking or swimming in contaminated water can result in kidney damage. These include:

There is also evidence to suggest that lead is an independent risk factor causing elevated blood pressure whilst there may be no presence of overt renal failure.

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Occupations posing a risk of workers developing kidney disease

The list of hazardous substances which can cause workers to develop kidney disease is extensive, so too the type of industries and occupations in which workers can be at risk, ranging from manual workers, through professional workers and workers in nuclear industries.

Exposure can occur not only during the manufacturing and production of many items, but also the use of those items in other industries and operations.

Specific occupations where there is a known risk include dentistry, nuclear energy production, and the operation of crematoria. Amongst the many other workers potentially at risk are farmers, through their use of pesticides and insecticides, and workers in occupations that involve the use of wood preserver such as gardeners or builders.

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Symptoms of kidney disease and renal failure

Fortunately, we are normally born with two kidneys, which provide the body with substantially more kidney function than is necessary for our survival. Even if we are in the situation of having only one functioning kidney, this is usually sufficient function for our survival. Unfortunately, this means that people who are suffering with chronic kidney disease will be unaware of their condition until either it is diagnosed by routine testing for kidney disease, or their condition deteriorates towards kidney failure (established renal failure).

A routine blood or urine test for other unrelated reasons, can often discover a problem with kidney function long before the symptoms become apparent.

If the kidney(s) continue to lose function undiagnosed, the symptoms of impending kidney failure may include:

In the case of male sufferers, there may be additional problems with erectile dysfunction (the inability to achieve or maintain an erection).

In extreme circumstances, chronic kidney disease is a potentially serious condition and sufferers can have an increased risk of a stroke or heart attack due to the changes that occur in the circulation, and can cause kidney failure (established renal failure). Please go to our section on treatments for kidney disease.

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Control of Substances Hazardous to Health Regulations

The CoSHH Regulations were put in place to protect workers from exposure to chemicals and other substances in the workplace. Under these regulations, employers have a duty to carry out risk assessments and take appropriate protective steps to manage work activities to eliminate exposure. Failing that, they have a duty to control and reduce exposure to as low a level as is practically possible. The use of protective gloves, goggles, respiratory protection and protective clothing are to be the last resort.

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Making a personal injury claim for occupational kidney disease

Whether your personal injury was caused by exposure to chemicals or hazardous substances at work or in a public place, you may still be entitled to make a claim. Providing it can be proven that your injury was caused by your exposure to the hazardous substance and the person or company who allowed you to come into contact with the chemical was negligent or in breach of applicable statutory regulations, then your claim for compensation should be valid.

Clear Answers' personal injury lawyers are waiting to advise you whether you have a valid claim for compensation. Our specialist industrial disease lawyers will talk you through the claim process in plain English and will be pleased to answer any questions you may have regarding your claim.

Telephone us now on 0800 783 9019 or complete one of our online compensation claim forms.

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