Diabetes and Chronic Kidney Disease
Diabetes is a group of diseases characterized by high levels of blood sugar, resulting from insufficient production of insulin by the pancreas and is the leading cause of Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) in the United States. Because a cure for diabetic kidney disease has not yet been found, treatment involves controlling the disorder (by monitoring blood sugar levels) and slowing its progression to kidney failure.
Facts about Diabetes and Chronic Kidney Disease:
Nearly 16 million Americans, or about 6% of the United States’ population, have diabetes. Of these, 5.4 million have gone undiagnosed.
Each year, more than 30,000 diabetics develop kidney failure.
In the United States, diabetes is more common among certain minority groups, including American Indians, Alaskan Natives, African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Asian Americans.
Diabetes is a group of diseases characterized by high levels of blood sugar resulting from insufficient production of insulin by the pancreas or defects in insulin action in the body.
Risk factors for diabetes include autoimmune, genetic and environmental factors.
Diabetes damages small blood vessels throughout the body, affecting the kidneys, as well as other organs and tissues, including skin, eyes, nerves, muscles, intestines and the heart.
High blood pressure in diabetics may be the most important predictor of who will develop kidney disease.
The longer a person has diabetes, the greater the risk of developing CKD.
Some of the signs that a diabetic may be developing kidney disease include:
- Protein in the urine
- Abnormal blood tests
- High blood pressure
- Morning sickness, nausea and vomiting
- Leg swelling and leg cramps
- Weakness, pallor and anemia
- Increased need to urinate
- Less need for insulin or medicine to control hyperglycemia
A cure for diabetic kidney disease has not yet been found, while treatment involves controlling the disorder.
Some of the treatments that may be effective are:
- Controlling high blood pressure
- Exercise and weight loss
- Controlling blood sugar levels
- Reducing dietary protein intake
- Avoiding medications that may damage the kidneys