Chronic Kidney Disease, or CKD, is a failure of the kidneys’ ability to function effectively. It is not a failure of you as a person, or your dreams or your goals for the future. Having late stage CKD means that the time has come to thoughtfully plan and make decisions for treatment, which may need to start in the next weeks or months. With guidance from your health care team and the counsel of your family, you have a great deal to say and do about what your future holds. It would be completely understandable for you to be feeling overwhelmed, and maybe frightened, and even sad, or angry that your CKD has reached a point where you will need treatment; choices that will be with you for the rest of your life. In this Living section of the Kidney Smart program, you will begin to learn what treatment means for your everyday life. Starting treatment will require changes to your routines at home and at work, and will take some time to get used to. Your health care team takes on added importance. Each member of the team has a particular role in supporting you and your health, and will work with you to create a treatment plan that exactly meets your needs. Their particular jobs are introduced in the Adjusting to Treatment chapter of this program. All of the coming plans are geared toward one goal: helping you to Take Control, Make a Plan, and Stay Your Course to live a full life with CKD. You are not alone.

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