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World Kidney Day 2014: Pay attention to your kidney health after the age of 50

If you are above the age of 50, it's time you paid attention to your kidney health.

Old man kidney diseaseMar 13 World Kidney Day

Over 50 per cent of Mumbaikars in the 50-60 age group suffer from chronic kidney disease (CKD), finds an ongoing study being carried by the Narmada Kidney Foundation (NKF), a Mumbai-based NGO working on kidney diseases. Started this January, the study has so far screened 221 people above 50 years of age.

Dr Bharat Shah, director, Institute of Renal Sciences, Global Hospital, said, 'This year the theme of World Kidney Day is chronic kidney disease and aging. To determine the prevalence of CKD among the elderly, the NKF has been screening senior citizens (above 60) in different societies. It is being done in those not known to be having kidney disease.' Dr Shah is also the managing trustee of NKF. According to Dr Shah, 51.6% of people in the 51-60 age group has CKD; in the 61-70 group it's 57.4%, and in the 71-80 group, it's 90.5%. The foundation plans to conduct screening throughout the year.

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Dr Jatin Kothari, consultant nephrologist, PD Hinduja Hospital, said: 'CKD is an age-related problem and its prevalence is high among the elderly. We can spread awareness on how to prevent or detect it early, and that will help in bringing down the burden of CKD on the society.' With even the young getting diabetes and hypertension, doctors feel the burden of CKD is only going to rise in the near future. 'Diabetes and hypertension are known factors of CKD. Hence it's important that diabetic and hypertension patients get routine kidney function tests done,' said Dr Rajesh Kumar, nephrologist, Dr LH Hiranandani Hospital.

Regular urine test on diabetic and high blood pressure patients can detect leak of small amounts of protein called albumin. This is the earliest sign of abnormal kidney function. 'Then there is a group of people in whom the cause of CKD has not been detected or explained so far. It could be because they have abused painkillers. Elderly people with urinary-tract infections also need to do routine check up,' said Dr Kothari.

Read more about causes, symptoms, diagnosis and treatment of kidney disease.

Source: DNASyndication/ By Somita Paldna-syndication-logo1

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