CKD Epidemiology shows stagnant prevalence but changing patient characteristics, says GlobalData

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Following the news (Wednesday February 6) that the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released new numbers for US chronic kidney disease (CKD) prevalence in adults,

Kasey Fu, Director of Epidemiology at GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company, offers her view on CKD trends and current challenges:

‘‘The CDC released the latest data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2015-2016 that showed the total prevalence of CKD stages 1-4 in adults was around 14%. This corresponds to more than 32 million adults in the US having the disease.

“What is interesting about this data release is that CKD prevalence has hovered around 14% since 1994. However, diabetes, a major risk factor for CKD and the primary cause of kidney failure, has been on the rise during this time. On the surface, this may seem like we are getting better at preventing CKD, but once you look at CKD prevalence trends by stage, the story is not quite so simple.

“The CDC also reported that for those with advanced stage CKD, stage 3 or 4, diabetes prevalence have increased from 19.5% to 24.5% from 1999 to 2014. This shows that while the overall size of CKD may be holding still, more people have both CKD and diabetes, and this subpopulation has more severe CKD.

“Total prevalence also includes undiagnosed cases, people who may not be aware of their CKD condition. Awareness of disease is very low with CKD, the CDC estimates only about 50% of those with stage IV CKD are aware of their disease, and as low as 3% of those with stage I disease are aware.

“CKD patients with diabetes comorbidity are at higher risk for hospitalizations and have more difficulties managing their conditions. Therefore, increasing awareness and diagnosis of CKD would improve outcomes and delay progression to end stage renal disease, where much more drastic treatments such as dialysis and kidney transplants are necessary. The new algorithm developed by Roche and IBM to predict risk of CKD in patients with diabetes may aid in improving diagnosis.”

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