Failure to Diagnose Kidney Disease Early Claims Many Lives; Treatment Is Available, but Not the Funds to Afford It, Writes Charles Swanepoel

Cape Times (South Africa), May 22, 2007 | Go to article overview

Failure to Diagnose Kidney Disease Early Claims Many Lives; Treatment Is Available, but Not the Funds to Afford It, Writes Charles Swanepoel


Kidney disease is common, harmful and treatable - this was the message from the World Kidney Day initiative of the International Society of Nephrology and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations on March 8.

Nephrology communities throughout the world participated by advertising - and in so doing |increased awareness of - kidney disease.

"Are your kidneys normal?" was the question asked on that day.

Our kidneys remove waste products from our bodies and maintain the internal milieu which sustains life. The kidney also produces active vitamin D, which is essential for bone development and bone strength, and erythropoietin, which ensures adequate production of red blood cells.

While there are no accurate statistics on the prevalence of kidney disease in South Africa, the medical literature claims "about a 10%" prevalence in the adult population throughout the world.

"Diseases of the kidneys" are not spoken about much at home or in the community. Kidneys are seen as of nuisance value only - they fill bladders and cause you to find a loo! No one flinches at the idea of eating a steak-and-kidney pie.

Contrast the reaction when heart disease is mentioned. All pay immediate attention and eagerly wish to know more. No one eats "steak-and-heart" pie!

How many times has your loved one rushed to you to confess loving you with all his or her kidney? Few are aware that chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease. If you ignore kidney disease, you ignore a potentially fatal process.

CKD can result from different"insults" that cause the kidneys to malfunction. Once malfunction begins, progression to total renal failure ensues in 75% of cases, and this can take place rapidly or over many years.

Early diagnosis can slow progression and, thereby, prolong the time to end-stage renal failure and reduce the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.

Kidney machines are widely available to sustain life in those with kidney failure. In addition, kidney transplantation is a routine form of treatment.

A little known fact is that late Professor Chris Barnard did a kidney transplant before his famous heart transplant in 1967. This single kidney transplant gave an additional 22 years of life to the patient before dying from heart disease.

Despite advances in kidney transplantation, it is preferable to try to retain your own kidney function for as long as possible. So it is crucial that people diagnosed be started early on a programme to slow the progressive nature of kidney failure.

The South African Renal Society (Sars) prides itself on maintaining standards and ensures that nephrology training in this country is of the highest standard. Registered nephrologists are in a good position to facilitate prolonging renal function and should be involved early in this important task.

It is a major concern that, despite all our knowledge, individuals with CKD continue to arrive late for treatment, necessitating emergency, invasive and often expensive procedures for kidney failure.

Sadly, late referrals are very common among patients with high blood pressure who were not investigated for kidney disease (the two diseases often go hand-in-hand). …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items

Items saved from this article

This article has been saved
Highlights (0)
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

Citations (0)
Some of your citations are legacy items.

Any citation created before July 30, 2012 will labeled as a “Cited page.” New citations will be saved as cited passages, pages or articles.

We also added the ability to view new citations from your projects or the book or article where you created them.

Notes (0)
Bookmarks (0)

You have no saved items from this article

Project items include:
  • Saved book/article
  • Highlights
  • Quotes/citations
  • Notes
  • Bookmarks
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Cited article

Failure to Diagnose Kidney Disease Early Claims Many Lives; Treatment Is Available, but Not the Funds to Afford It, Writes Charles Swanepoel
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Author Advanced search

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.