Chronic kidney disease: What you should not forget

The most common causes of kidney disease are high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, high cholesterol. 

Chronic kidney disease: What you should not forget

New Delhi: Kidney disease can affect people of all ages and races, including children. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a long-term condition where the kidneys don't work right as they should, leading to kidney failure over time.

The most common causes of kidney disease are high blood pressure (hypertension), diabetes, high cholesterol. Sometimes, it is inherited such as polycystic disease. People can also get kidney disease as a result of blockages in the flow of urine or regular use of certain medications (analgesics).


Because kidney disease starts slowly and silently, there are usually no signs or symptoms in the early stages. It may be identified via blood and urine tests.

Therefore paying attention to your kidneys, especially, as you get older is important because early detection and treatment can help prevent the progression of kidney disease to kidney failure.

There is no cure for chronic kidney disease, but treatment can help relieve the symptoms and halt the progression of the disease. Kidney disease, if detected in the early stages, can be treated very effectively.

Treatments for kidney disease include:

  • Medications – to help patients keep their blood pressure, cholesterol in a healthy range.
  • Lifestyle changes – proper diet (a lower protein diet) to minimise waste products in the body while eating a healthy food. This will reduce the amount of work the kidneys must do.
  • Dialysis – this is done in advanced CKD, to replace blood cleaning functions as the kidneys no longer work.
  • Kidney transplant – this treatment is for end-stage CKD, involving surgically placing a healthy kidney from a donor into your body. Despite shortage of organs available for donation, kidney transplant is considered the best treatment option for many people with severe CKD.

It is important for people to not only become aware of their risk, but also to learn about the steps they can take to keep their kidneys healthier longer. Chronic kidney disease also triggers other health problems like cardiovascular disease - heart attacks and strokes - which also leads to premature death. For this reason, cardiovascular disease is one of the main causes of death in people with kidney disease. 

Every year, World Kidney Day (WKD) is held on second Thursday in March - an event that aims to raise awareness about kidney health and chronic kidney disease. The theme for this year’s World Kidney Day is 'Kidney Disease and Obesity', which objective is to remind the public how diabetes and high blood pressure are critical risk factors for CKD.