Treatment for acute kidney injury involves treating the cause and managing the symptoms until the kidneys recover from the injury. Healthcare professionals should discuss all possible treatments with you and/or your parents or carers before any decisions are made.

Treating a blockage

The ureters are tubes that carry fluid from the kidneys to the bladder. If these are blocked, you should be referred to a specialist who will offer you treatment for the blockage. This might involve draining the kidney with a small tube (called a nephrostomy) or placing a small tube inside the kidney to ease the blockage (called stenting). You should have these treatments as soon as possible, and within 12 hours of the blockage being detected.


There are a number of signs that suggest your kidneys are struggling to cope. These include breathlessness, chest pain, very high creatinine or potassium levels. If you have these, healthcare professionals may offer you some form of dialysis while your kidneys are recovering from injury. One form of dialysis involves passing your blood into a tube and through a dialysis machine to remove the waste products normally removed by your kidneys. You should be given information about dialysis, including what it will involve, how often you will have it and the length of the sessions.

Loop diuretics (for example, furosemide, bumetanide)

Loop diuretics are drugs that increase the amount of urine made by the kidneys. You may be offered a loop diuretic while you're waiting to have dialysis. If you don't need dialysis, you may be offered loop diuretics while your kidneys are recovering from injury.

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