Clinically, the main symptom of nephropathy is swelling; thus, the "water-swelling diseases" of the ancient texts probably included symptoms due to disorders of the cardiovascular system as well as kidney diseases. Kidney disease might be found in the ancient texts under the headings of swelling, water disease, or water-"cancer" disease (ascites). "Water-swelling diseases" associated with irregular pulse probably indicated disorders due to heart disease, rather than kidney disorders. The section on "water-swelling disease" in the Hyangyak chipsong pang lists ten different forms.
Because symptoms of diseases of the urinary bladder are conspicuous and painful, they were the subject of considerable medical interest. The Hyangyak chipsong pang discusses dysuria, ischuria, pol-lakiuria, urinary incontinence, hematuria, gross hematuria associated with high-fever diseases, and enuresis. Various symptoms of urinary problems are also discussed in connection with gonorrhea. Some of the "disorders of urine" might have been caused by tuberculosis of the urogenital system.
The Tongui pogam discusses the urinary bladder and diseases of urination in detail. The five colors of urine were said to provide diagnostic clues to the origin of illness. Diseases related to difficult urination were followed by a discussion of various forms of gonorrhea symptoms.
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