Could You Live Without Your Kidneys?

Your kidneys are two purplish-brown, flat, bean-shaped organs that lie on each side of your spine near your waistline. These fist-sized organs are among the most important in your body.

The kidneys’ most important function is the production of urine, which carries waste materials out of your body. It is just as important for your body to be able to get rid of what it does not need as it is for it to take in what it does need. For if poisonous wastes accumulate in your body, they can cause death.

Kidneys, at the same time, help control the production of red blood cells and maintain the body’s blood pressure.

A person can live with only one functioning kidney if the other is diseased or has been removed. But no one can live without both kidneys, unless he undergoes almost daily treatments on a special machine called a dialysis machine. This machine is attached to the body, and cleans the blood and removes the wastes, two of the jobs that the kidneys usually do.

If one of a person’s kidneys is removed or diseased, the other may enlarge enough to carry on the work of two and permit a person to live a normal life.

Two normal kidneys contain 2 million tiny blood filters which filter 50 gallons of blood every day!