How long can you live with stage 4 kidney failure

How long can you live with stage 4 kidney failure

If you’ve been recently diagnosed with stage 4 kidney disease, you may be wondering how long you can expect to live. Many sufferers of kidney failure experience a range of emotions, including anger, denial, and depression; and they often ask, “What does this mean for my life expectancy?”. We’re here to help you understand what stage 4 kidney failure means and how long you can expect to live with it. In this article, we’ll provide a nuanced overview of the life expectancy for those living with stage 4 kidney disease.

1. Understanding Stage 4 Kidney Failure: What It Means

Stage 4 kidney failure, also known as End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD), is the most severe form of kidney failure. In this stage, kidneys are damaged enough to prevent them from filtering waste and extra fluids from the body. Symptoms may include fatigue, nausea, itching, unexplained weight loss, trouble sleeping, dry and itchy skin, and swelling of the ankles, feet, or hands.

2. Treatment Options to Help Manage the Symptoms

Treatment of stage 4 kidney failure depends on the person’s overall health. Treatment options may include:

  • Dialysis: a procedure to filter toxins and extra fluids from the body
  • Kidney transplant: a procedure where the patient receives a new, healthy kidney
  • Medications to treat symptoms or complications
  • Diet changes to limit salt, protein, and potassium intake
  • Regular doctor visits to monitor kidney function and health

3. Understanding Life Expectancy with Stage 4 Kidney Failure

Life expectancy with stage 4 kidney failure depends on the person’s age, overall health, and other individual factors. Some people can live for several years while others may only live for a few months. If a person is older or has other health complications, their life expectancy may be greatly reduced.

4. How to Take Control of Your Health in This Situation

It is important to remain involved in your healthcare if you have stage 4 kidney failure. You should talk with your healthcare team to discuss the best treatment options for your situation. Additionally, strive to follow the treatment plan recommended by your healthcare team and keep your medications up to date. Living a healthy lifestyle can also help to manage and improve the symptoms of stage 4 kidney failure.

5. Understanding Support and Resources Available to Aid You

There are many resources and support available if you are living with stage 4 kidney failure. Local kidney-focused organizations, such as the National Kidney Foundation and the American Nephrology Nurses Association, can provide education, resources, and support for those dealing with kidney disease. Additionally, online support groups are available to connect with others who are dealing with similar struggles.

Finally, don’t hesitate to reach out to family and friends who can provide emotional support. Let them know what you are going through and how they can be there for you.


Q: What is Stage 4 kidney failure?
A: Stage 4 kidney failure, also known as end-stage renal disease (ERSD), is the most advanced stage of chronic kidney disease (CKD). At this stage, the kidneys are no longer able to filter waste and toxins from the blood, resulting in progressive accumulation of toxins in the body.

Q: How long can you expect to live with stage 4 kidney failure?
A: The life expectancy of someone with stage 4 kidney failure depends on many factors, including overall health, age, access to treatment, and the level of kidney function. In general, someone with stage 4 kidney failure can expect to live somewhere between 3 to 5 years.

Q: What treatments are available for stage 4 kidney failure?
A: Treatment options for stage 4 kidney failure include dialysis and kidney transplant. Dialysis is a procedure that involves using a machine to filter blood and remove toxins and waste from the body. Kidney transplant is a surgical procedure where a healthy kidney is transplanted from a donor into the recipient’s body. Other treatments may also be available depending on the patient’s situation.

Q: What lifestyle changes can people with stage 4 kidney failure make to improve their quality of life?
A: People with stage 4 kidney failure should take an active role in managing their own health to improve their quality of life. This can include making changes to diet and nutrition, being physically active when possible, managing stress, and quitting smoking. Additionally, it’s important to follow all medical advice and keep up with regular doctor appointments.

Final notes

I hope this article has helped clarify your questions and concerns about living with stage 4 kidney failure. Managing kidney failure can be difficult, but with the right care and attention, there is the possibility of a good quality of life for many years. Stay positive, act responsibly, and don’t forget to talk to your doctor if you have any health concerns. Take care out there!
In the final stages of renal failure, stage 4 is a severe impairment to the kidneys. In the midst of the stage 4 diagnosis, many may be wondering how long life can be expected.

Chronic kidney disease commonly progresses over 10 to 14 years, gradually increasing from stage 1-3 before reaching stage 4. Kidney transplant is the recommended treatment and survival rates vary based on the transplant type and other predisposing factors.

Knowing the exact timeframe of kidney disease before progression to stage 4 is unclear; the disease is often quite variable and its progression depends on many factors, including lifestyle and diet. Once in stage 4, dialysis or a transplant is the best course of action.

Dialysis is the first treatment recommendation for those in stage 4 of chronic kidney disease as it can help manage symptoms and improve overall life expectancy. However, it is important to note that dialysis is not a cure and has limited benefits if the patient already has stage 4 kidney failure and complications resulting from any nephrotic syndrome or renal hypertension. Without a successful kidney transplant, life expectancy of stage 4 patients is only within a few years.

The type of transplant also affects life expectancy, and those who receive a transplant from a donor have a much higher life expectancy if a healthy immune response is present. The five-year survival rate of a kidney transplant approaches 70-90 percent.

Leading a healthy lifestyle is the best way for those with stage 4 kidney failure to maximize their life expectancy. Eating a healthy diet, engaging in regular exercise, and managing stress are just a few of the steps that can be taken to improve quality of life and extend life expectancy.

At the end of the day, a stage 4 kidney diagnosis is serious and managing the condition is often complicated, but with the right treatment options, proper lifestyle modifications, and supports, life expectancy can be extended significantly.