Chronic kidney disease (CKD), which appears to be rising in the region, is a significant cause of morbidity as well as mortality besides being an expensive disease to manage, says Dr Ravi Arora, Specialist Internal Medicine – Endocrinology – Diabetes, Head of the Emergency Dept, NMC Specialty Hospital, Abu Dhabi, UAE.

‘The most common causes are diabetes, hypertension (high blood pressure), coronary artery disease and kidney stone disease. Interestingly, worldwide diabetes related CKD incidences are diminishing due to better control of diabetes and the associated risk factors.

There is a link between diabetes and hypertension. Worldwide, about 25 per cent of patients with long-standing diabetes develop some degree of CKD. In the UAE, 45-48 per cent of CKD patients requiring dialysis have diabetes. Meticulous management of diabetes, hypertension and the other risk-factors can not only prevent development and progression of CKD but also help improve the quality of life of patients, says Dr Arora.

A few must-dos for CKD management:

✱ Appropriate control of blood sugar level, BP and cholesterol.

✱ Strict adherence and compliance with chronic medication for diabetes/hypertension.

✱ Address the modifiable risk factors like smoking, obesity, salt consumption.

✱ Get regular blood and urine tests done (at least once every year if the kidney function is normal, and more frequently, if abnormal. The two most important tests are urine microalbuminuria (to detect small quantities of albumin in the urine) and serum creatinine.

✱ Drink plenty of water and minimise indiscriminate use of pain-killers.