American patients who are suffering from kidney disease tend to show improvement in recent times. There are still challenges ahead but a lot has been accomplished.
The USRDS has issued a report that shows both reasons for optimism and pessimism in the treatment of kidney disease. Firstly, mortality rates have gone down in kidney dialysis patients as well as kidney transplant patients.
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Both trends showed a decrease of 28% and 40% respectively. However, the occurrence of end-stage kidney disease and kidney failure showed a marked increase. The dialysis population went up by 4%.
As for residential dialysis practice, it is up by 52% since a decade ago. And finally, kidney transplant recipients were up by a significant percentage too.
Those patients who are at the end of their capacity for kidney function may be better off since most machines take over the role of their kidneys. They can survive despite lacking a kidney or kidneys.
And while the overall trend is one of hope, there is still room for improvement in other areas of health and the healing arts. Diabetes, hypertension and CV disease may direly affect the state of one’s kidneys.
The tracking and prevention of such conditions is necessary for managing kidney disease. Although kidney disease patients tend to have greater longevity nowadays, their upkeep is a costly procedure.
“Overall trends for end-stage kidney disease are promising for those affected,” says Rajiv Saran, M.D., professor of internal medicine at U-M Health System and director of the USRDS coordinating center.
“Patients on dialysis are living longer and equally positive, survival rates have steadily improved among recipients of both living and deceased donor kidney transplants.”
“Several lifestyle-related chronic health conditions, such as diabetes, high blood pressure and other cardiovascular diseases can contribute to kidney disease,” Saran says.
“Monitoring and early treatment of those conditions are key to prevention, and can help patients keep their kidney disease under control.”
Two years ago, the budget for elderly kidney disease patients was a whopping $50 billion. This amounts to 20% of the Medicare fund for sufferers of disease. For end-stage kidney disease patients, the budget rose to $30.9 billion which again is not a small amount of money.
Meanwhile, home dialysis is a phenomenon which is becoming more and more popular nowadays. It offers more choices and is also easier for the patient and his or her family.
The general population shows lack of awareness about kidney disease though. The tests for the disease are seldom a norm in society. Kidney disease is an insidious malady.
It slowly creeps up on you and before you know it you are in the throes of a struggle between life and death. Therefore, care is better than cure.
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And by gathering more information about the disease and taking preventative measures, Americans may avoid some of the more severe symptoms of the troublesome illness.