With as many as 10,000 new Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) patients being registered with PGI each year, doctors say the number reflects just the tip of the iceberg. The disease burden is increasing and there are hundreds suffering from CKD, but are unaware.
Chronic Kidney disease is a progressive loss of renal function. It is defined when the glomerular filtration rate (GFR) in the kidney falls below 60 ml per minute and if it is persistent for over three months. There are five stage that are identified by calculating GFR. A GFR of over 90 with kidney damage is categorised as stage 1, GFR 60-90 with some kidney damage is stage 2, GFR less than 60-30 is stage 3, from 30-15 is stage 4 and less than 15 is stage 5.
The disease is asymptomatic till stage 3. However, as it reaches the advanced stage, symptoms such as loss of appetite, weakness, vomiting, difficulty in walking, rise in potassium level, swelling of the face especially around the yes start showing up.
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“The burden of chronic kidney diseases is increasing. Every year, about 20,000 new patients are registered with the Renal clinic. Around 50 per cent are suffering from CKD. Majority of these patients are in the stages of 3-5,” said Dr KL Gupta, head of PGI’s Nephrology department.
He added the disease can be managed better if diagnosed early. “Because of lack of awareness the disease is often diagnosed at later stages only. In the advanced stage (4-5), the best cure is renal transplant or dialysis. Many patients can not afford this because of expensive treatment and shortage of donors.”
As per surveys, the incidence of CKD varies from 150 to 229 per million of population in different states. Every year, over 2 lakh new patients are added. Of them, only 10 per cent patients have access to dialysis and only 3 per cent can afford a transplant. Around 85 to 90 per cent patients do not have access to transplants.
Two important risk factors here are diabetes and hypertension. “Diabetes is the most common cause of CKD and accounts for 40 per cent cases in PGI. The other causes in India are hypertension (13%), glomerular diseases (14%) and undetermined etiology (16%),” said Dr Gupta.
The Nephrology department will organise a ‘World Kidney Day Awareness Campaign’ to spread awareness and identify kidney patients.
“On March 12 and 13, a free medical checkup will be done at the New OPD of PGI from 9:30 am to 4 pm. People are required to pre-register on 85911-29992,” Gupta added.