You Could Have One of These Terrible Diseases Without Even Knowing It

We’ve all been there; your throat feels scratchy and your temperature is high. It may be easy to spot the flu, but not every disease is easy to detect. The following conditions could wreak havoc on your body. We’ve ranked them from most to least common so you’ll know what to look for. One deadly cancer can go undetected for years (page 15).

17. Chronic kidney disease

doctor writing on a medical chart.

Doctors often miss this chronic illness. | Bojan89/iStock/Getty Images

  • Affects: 30 million Americans
  • Symptoms: headaches, appetite loss, itchy skin, muscle cramps, swelling of hands and feet
  • Misdiagnosed as: malnutrition

Our kidneys keep our bodies chemically balanced. But when they’re damaged, waste gathers in the bloodstream. The majority of those with CKD don’t know they have it. If left untreated, it can lead to kidney failure, heart attack, or stroke, according to WebMD.

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