Chronic kidney disease is one of the most pervasive health problems facing Americans. Left untreated, CKD can lead to health complications that include high blood pressure and heart disease as the kidneys fail to remove waste and excess water from the body.
Review these little-known facts about CKD if you or a family member has received this diagnosis.
Prevalence and diagnosis
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 15% of U.S. adults have CKD, but 90% of those individuals do not know they have kidney disease. Among the people with undiagnosed CKD, about half have limited kidney function and need dialysis to prevent serious health problems.
Adults ages 65 and older have the highest risk of CKD. About 38% of this age group has kidney disease, compared to just 13% of Americans ages 45 to 64.
Women have a higher risk for CKD; 15% of females have this condition compared to 12% of men in the U.S. Black Americans have the highest rate of CKD at 16%, followed by 14% of Hispanics, 13% of white Americans and 12% of Asian Americans.
Most often, CKD develops among people who already have high blood pressure or uncontrolled diabetes. Individuals who have these conditions should receive regular screening to make sure their kidneys are functioning properly.
If your doctor failed to diagnose CKD, you could have a medical malpractice claim if he or she did not adhere to the expected level of care. If you live in Florida you have two years to file this type of lawsuit.