Stage 5 kidney failure

Hi, What are the symptoms of end stage kidney failure? My dad has now entered stage 5. He’s almost 90 years old and suffers from dementia. He’s been complaining of tummy ache today and I was wondering if it’s a symptom of his failing kidneys . One minute he’s says he’s in pain then says it doesn’t matter. It’s so hard because of his dementia. Any advice ??? ( he is on conservative management) Thanks in advance x

Hi Elyse,
I’m sorry but I don’t know. Have you looked for info on the NHS website? Personally I’d ring 111 for advice this evening and book him a GP appointment tomorrow. As he has dementia and is unable to properly communicate his symptoms, you can’t be too careful.


This might help.

Hi Elyse,

My son has severe learning difficulties, so in many ways similar to your dad.

Because he doesn’t understand medication fully, the Golden Rule is that he should never even have “over the counter” medicine without first seeing the doctor.

Even if nothing can be done to make him “better” there might be something that can make him more comfortable, or it might be urgent and he needs hospital.You cannot know, as dad can’t tell you, exactly what is wrong with him.

Definitely call the doctor, so he can make a proper assessment, and then, whatever happens, your conscience will be clear.

Hi Elyse
I was in a similar position with my dad who also had End Stage Kidney Failure on conservative management with vascular dementia in his early 90’s. With so many complex health issues it is hard to know what is causing the symptoms and all you can really concentrate on is pain relief.
There are quite a few sites giving symptoms of End Stage KIdney Failure also known as Stage 5. I will post a few of the better links I found.

[u] ealth/end-stage-kidney-disease#symptoms\[/u]

Thank you all for replies. My dad is on conservative management for his CKD . When I’ve looked on line it mentions care from district nurses/renal nurses etc but when I asked the GP she said no,the care staff at the care home will look after him ? The home is good but non of the staff are medically trained and don’t seem to know about CKD or the symptoms. My dad was under the renal unit a couple of years back but I made the decision to stop going as it was too stressful for us both and my dad is frail and his dementia had progressed.
I’m now feel like I’ve just been left to deal with it on my own and have no support. I worry for when my dad deteriorates . X

Is dad in a CARE home, which doesn’t need to have medically trained staff, or a NURSING home, which requires trained staff on duty at all times.

Is dad paying the fees himself?

How much personal care does he need?

My dad is in a care home not nursing . He fully funds himself . I don’t want him moved as he’s settled there and been there for 4 years . I just wished the staff were more aware of elderly conditions. X

He also needs all personal care, toileting, use of hoist as has no mobility and needs catheter care x

Really, he should be in a nursing home with that level of need, it is very surprising that they are prepared to meet his needs. I understand that you don’t want him moved.

Have you ever checked to see if he was entitled to NHS Continuing Healthcare, which would give him entirely free care via the NHS? He should have an assessment as soon as possible, ask your GP to arrange this for you, urgently.

IF he doesn’t qualify for full CHC (it’s a postcode lottery) he might still qualify for NHS Funded Nursing Care, but this should only be offered AFTER an assessment for CHC.

I had my suspicions.

CHC / NHS Contuing Healthcare ?

Main thread :

If your dad is being conservatively managed, he will not be requiring specialist nursing care for his kidney failure. I think Dad was pretty much discharged from the kidney unit 12 months or more before he passed away. The care home should be familiar with palliative care I presume and will aim to keep your dad as comfortable as possible. Sadly it also seems as though the needs of dementia are not regarded as nursing needs but care needs or social needs.