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It’s well known that diabetes and hypertension are prevalent in
the United States. However, many people don’t realize these diseases
are also the leading causes of chronic
kidney disease (CKD). More than 26 million Americans have CKD,
and millions more are at increased risk and may not even know it. During
National Kidney Month in March, Fresenius
Medical Care North America (FMCNA), the nation’s leading network of dialysis
facilities, urges people at risk for CKD to be aware of the symptoms
of the disease and how to help slow its progression.
CKD is a progressive, usually permanent loss of kidney function. Many
people who have CKD are still in the early stages of the disease, but by
the time CKD leads to kidney failure, or end-stage renal disease (ESRD),
the only treatments are a kidney
transplant or dialysis.
Some of the early
symptoms of kidney disease include changes in urination; swelling of
the face, hands and/or feet; feeling more tired than usual; nausea and
vomiting; headache, dizziness; severe itching; shortness of breath; loss
of appetite; and high blood pressure.
“In the early stages of kidney disease many people do not show any
symptoms, which is why screening tests are so important,” said Dugan W.
Maddux, MD, FACP, vice president, Chronic Kidney Disease Initiatives at
FMCNA. “It is much better to know early if you have CKD because there
are often interventions that can slow its progression.”
5 Tips to Help Slow the Progression of Kidney Disease
During National Kidney Month, FMCNA urges people at risk for kidney
disease to follow these five tips that may help detect and slow the
progression of the disease:
1. Make sure you are screened for CKD if you have diabetes,
hypertension, cardiovascular disease or a family history of kidney
2. Be compliant with your prescribed medications.
3. Eat a healthy
diet and exercise daily.
4. Maintain an “ideal” body weight.
5. If you have CKD, educate yourself on how to manage your disease and
actively work with your healthcare team.
Some people can live with kidney disease under a doctor’s care for a
long time before they reach end-stage kidney disease, while others
progress more quickly. In either case, it’s important to be compliant
with your medical appointments and talk regularly with your healthcare
FMCNA has created several education programs to help inform patients and
their families to better understand CKD and treatment options. The
Options Program (TOPs) educational sessions are open to the public
at no cost, and provide information about kidney disease management and
the treatments available when CKD leads to kidney failure. To find a
class near you, call toll-free 1-877-TOPS-LIFE (1-877-867-7543) or visit www.ultracare-dialysis.com/TOPS
(in English and Spanish).
About Fresenius Medical Care
Fresenius Medical Care (NYSE: FMS) is the world’s leading company
devoted to patient-oriented renal therapy. Through nearly 2,900 clinics
in North America, Europe, Latin America, Asia-Pacific and Africa, we
provide kidney dialysis treatments to approximately 228,000 patients
worldwide. We are also the world’s leading maker of dialysis products
such as hemodialysis machines, dialyzers and related disposable
products. Chronic kidney failure is a condition that affects about 2
million individuals worldwide.
For more information about the company’s more than 1,800 U.S. dialysis
facilities, visit www.ultracare-dialysis.com
(in English and Spanish). For more information about Fresenius Medical
Care, visit www.fmc-ag.com