The alarm bells are going off for kidneys! One out of every 7 people in our country has kidney disease and this figure is growing rapidly. Bad habits in our daily lives also invite this disease which is advancing like an epidemic throughout the world and generally emerges as kidney failure as it progresses very insidiously. In particular excessive use of salt is a problem in our country. The Ministry of Health is taking some important measures towards combating salt. Prof. Dr. Ülkem Çakır, Head of the Department of Nephrology at Acibadem University School of Medicine and Nephrology Specialist at Acibadem International Hospital Organ Transplant Center, said that 70 thousand people are forced to live dependent on dialysis due to chronic kidney disease and one out of every 10 people is not even aware of his/her condition. Prof. Dr. Çakır provided some very important warnings and suggestions to draw attention to this serious illness in the scope of ‘World Kidney Day’ which is celebrated every year on the second Thursday in March.
Chronic kidney disease is a serious problem which has become a global epidemic. About 10% of all adults throughout the world have kidney disease. Our kidneys, which have a vital significance for our body, are shaped like a bean in terms of appearance and are each about 10 cm long and weigh 150 grams can get worn down for a number of different reasons and start to fail. The CREDIT study conducted by the Turkish Society of Nephrology revealed that one out of every 7 people in our country has kidney disease. Prof. Dr. Ülkem Çakır, Head of the Department of Nephrology at Acibadem University School of Medicine and Nephrology Specialist at Acibadem International Hospital Organ Transplant Center, said that chronic kidney disease often progressed insidiously and therefore was difficult to detect in the early stages without regular screening and added“Chronic kidney disease is a progressive disease. Out of every 10 chronic kidney disease patients in our country only one is aware of their condition. Since early detection is very rare, the disease is revealed at an advanced stage of kidney failure”.
The number of kidney patients is rapidly increasing
There are nearly 70 thousand patients in our country that live dependent on dialysis or have had a kidney transplant and this number is growing rapidly. 5% of the health budget is spent for these patients. In order for patients with kidney failure to continue living in the present situation, dialysis or a kidney transplant is required. The global cost of these treatments exceeds 1 trillion dollars. In contrast to this, kidney disease can be easily diagnosed with a simple and affordable blood test or a urine test and when it is caught early can be treated and kept from progressing or the progression can be delayed. The progression of the disease can be prevented with effective scanning and treatment on people at risk.
The risk of death and disability is 10-30 times higher!
The risk of death and disability is 10-30 times higher in chronic kidney disease patients than healthy individuals. The most effective way to prevent the adverse effects of the disease is preventive measures rather than treatment. In order to do this, a disease management model on a national scale needs to be implemented as soon as possible. In this context, the adoption and practice of healthy lifestyles by society is vital in terms of controlling this disease to a great extent. Since 2006 the second Thursday in March has been celebrated in the world and in our country as “World Kidney Day” to increase awareness for this very important issue. This year’s slogan for “World Kidney Day”, which is on March 9, is “Kidney health for everyone”. Prof. Dr. Çakır said “Unfortunately not all individuals have the same resources for preventing and treating this health problem that is becoming more widespread throughout the world. Kidney disease, which has become a very serious problem due to the changing economic conditions and insufficient health policies of countries, makes people become desperate for no good reason. The 2017 kidney day theme is to raise awareness especially among governments and lawmakers that kidney diseases are preventable and treatable”.
Chronic kidney disease can be prevented!
Functional problems can occur in the kidneys from infections, bleeding and using wrong medications as well as using pain relievers too frequently and from bad eating habits, smoking and excessive alcohol use. Especially people with diabetes, high blood pressure, cardiovascular diseases, obesity, and the elderly and those who have relatives with kidney diseases are under risk. Prof. Dr. Çakır, who pointed out that individuals under risk must get their kidneys checked on a regular basis, said that chronic kidney disease is a preventable disease and added“In order to prevent this disease we need to get regular exercise, balanced nutrition, maintain our ideal weight, reduce salt, drink enough water and avoid smoking and excessive alcohol use”.