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March 5, 2014

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1-in-8 has kidney disease

THE prevalence of chronic kidney disease among local adults has risen to 11.8 percent, medical experts said yesterday

“Over the past decade, the number of people with kidney disease has been rising by about 3 percent a year,” Dr Ding Xiaoqiang from Zhongshan Hospital and director of the Shanghai Society of Nephrology, said.

“In the same period, the number of people requiring outpatient dialysis has increased by more than 20 percent a year,” he said.

The cost of treating kidney patients is now a serious burden on the medical system, accounting for 10 percent of the annual expenditure of the city’s medical insurance fund, he said.

Ding made the comments at the start of Shanghai Kidney Week, which runs until World Kidney Day on March 13.

During the promotional campaign local hospitals will offer free consultations and lectures on kidney disease. World Kidney Day aims to raise awareness of the importance of the kidneys to people’s overall health.

This year’s theme for the global event is: “Kidneys age, Just like you,” which as the name suggests is intended to make people more aware of the problem of kidney disease in older patients.

“Early detection, diagnosis and treatment are key to the prevention and control of kidney disease,” Ding said.

Most people do not display any symptoms in the early stages, so regular urine and blood tests, as well as ultrasound scans of the kidneys are the best way to spot its onset, he said.

People with diabetes, hypertension and other chronic diseases should take more detailed checks, he said.


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