Medical Monday: Eliza Emoline Bell and Nephritis

Eliza Emoline BELL was my paternal 2nd great grandmother.  The lineage goes from Eliza and her first husband, Samuel WILLIAMS, to their daughter, Bessie.  Bessie is my paternal great grandmother.  Every time I start to write a post about Eliza, I get derailed…badly.  Every time.  I’m pretty sure she hates me.  But, I’m going to “try, try again”.  I have written about her several times and you can find those posts here:

We all have secrets

Prosperity- Different Strokes for Different Folks

Eliza Emoline Bell, Independence Girl

Mentioned in Luchadors, Lawmen, and the Lost

Eliza’s death date anniversary is 25 February 1934.  As I’ve said before, every time I research her I feel like I’m on the verge of a huge breakthrough.  Unfortunately, my research always falls short and I never quite make that breakthrough.  So today, in the interest of keeping this blog moving along, I’m going to post her death certificate which is something I haven’t given you before.  Additionally, I’ll go into some detail about her cause of death.  You can have a copy of her death certificate for yourself by going to this link:

jpeg eliza bell williams sneary death cert page 1

A supplement to the original death certificate was also issued:

jpeg eliza bell williams sneary death cert page 2

The best I can tell, the supplemental document was issued in order to add Eliza’s birthdate.

As you can see, Eliza’s cause of death was listed as Nephritis.  Nephritis is an inflammation of the kidneys and can lead to kidney failure and, ultimately, death.  Each different type of Nephritis has its own causes and since the doctor did not give any other detail, we will never know what type of Nephritis Eliza had.  Thanks to the internet, we can review the different kinds and causes of acute nephritis though.

Interstitial Nephritis causes the spaces between the kidney tubules to be inflamed, thus causing the kidneys to swell.  This type of nephritis is often caused by taking medications for long periods of time.  This type can also be caused by low potassium or an allergic reaction to a medication.

Pyelonephritis is another type of Nephritis.  It’s caused by a bacterial infection which often begins in the bladder and travels up the ureters into the kidneys.  The bacterial infection starts from a type of E. Coli found in the large intestine.  Other possible causes include the formation of kidney stones, surgery on the bladder/kidneys/ureters, or urinary exams using a tool called a cytoscope.

The last type of Nephritis listed at is Glomerulonephritis (historically known as Bright’s Disease).  This type of acute Nephritis is an inflammation of the capillaries in the kidneys.  The capillaries help filter the blood within the kidneys.  The exact cause of this type of Nephritis is unknown but believed to be caused by immune deficiencies, cancer, and/or broken abscesses within your body.

People with increased risk of Nephritis include those with a family history of kidney disease/infection (that would be YOU, Drake family!), those with immune system diseases such as Lupus, those who overuse antibiotics or pain medications, and/or anyone having had recent surgery on the urinary tract.

How would your body tell you that you might have Nephritis?  I’m glad you asked!  Depending on the type of acute Nephritis you have, you might feel pain in your pelvic area or abdomen or kidney areas and pain or burning when you urinate.  You may need to urinate frequently and your urine may be cloudy or contain blood or pus.  You may experience swelling in body parts (frequently in the face, feet, and legs).  You also may experience vomiting, fever, and/or high blood pressure.  Nephritis is often accompanied by blood pressure and heart problems.

If you feel you may be having these symptoms be sure to make an appointment with your doctor right away.  When you go, be sure to let the doctor know that there is a family history of kidney problems.  This may be important for the doctor to know in order to run the right tests on you.  Nephritis can be treated if you catch it early.  On the flip side, if you let it go it can kill you or leave you on dialysis for the rest of your life.

Take care of you!  There are people in this world who need you to be around for them.

Peace and health,

Lisa @ Days of Our Lives

**   Information for this post came from (see link above) and Missouri Digital Heritage (see link above).

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