Chronic kidney disease is defined as an abnormality of kidney structure or function that persists for more than three months. It is prevalent, affecting 10.4% of men and 11.8% of women, worldwide. Chronic kidney disease can progress such that between 5.3 and 10.5 million people need kidney replacement therapy in the form of dialysis or transplantation. Although there are many who do not receive these treatments due to lack of resource or financial barriers.
Approximately 425 million adults (20-79 years of age) were living with diabetes in 2017, and this figure will rise further to 629 million by 2045, according to the International Diabetes Federation. The number of people affected by high blood pressure has increased from 594 million in 1975 to over 1.1 billion in 2015. Diabetes and hypertension are the two most common causes of kidney failure requiring dialysis: one in three patients on dialysis need renal replacement secondary to diabetes. In many instances, the development of diabetes and hypertension is avoidable.
A recently published study showed that renal patients are very complex patients - they have more comorbidities and the highest risk of mortality, when compared to patients managed by other specialties including of infectious disease specialists, pulmonologists, hematologists, rheumatologists, gastroenterologists, cardiologists, endocrinologists, and family physicians.