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  Monday, 13 May 2019
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I am a 59y/o female. I recently, by accident, found out I have only one functioning kidney. My left kidney is 11cm my right is 3. I have never had any problems with my kidney. I had blood work done about 5 years ago and it just said that my eGFR was >60, my K+ and PO4 have always been within normal limits, my creatnine was normal. I have never had high BP, last one at doctors office was 116/72, I dont have diabetes. So I dont know if I was born with only one functioning kidney or what. Is there a way they can tell if the kidney was damaged or if I was born that way. Now of course I'm very worried about having one kidney. Im not on any medications and am very active I run, hike, backpack, ski, kayak.

Based on your description, it's not possible to say conclusively whether you were born that way or whether it happened as a result of a childhood or other illness such as a kidney stone, urinary tract infection or reflux earlier in life that could explain this. Having said that, this very likely will have no impact on your life - just as kidney donors live healthy lives with one kidney. I would ensure that on your urinalysis that you have normal protein levels, that you abstain from smoking and continue a healthy lifestyle.

Dr. Jordan Weinstein
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