Prognosis of Diabetic Nephropathy

By  , Expert Content
Dec 22, 2011

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The term nephropathy means kidney disease or damage. Diabetic nephropathy or diabetic kidney disease is a common complication of diabetes. It has become a leading cause of chronic renal failure in adults. Read to know more on the prognosis of diabetic nephropathy.

Symptoms of diabetic nephropathy: Clinical symptoms of diabetic nephropathy start about 10 years after renal damage (or protein in urine) starts. About 30-35% of people with diabetes (both type 1 and 2) have albumin in urine (microalbuminuria and macroalbuminuria). Risk of kidney damage and progress of kidney disease in diabetes is increased in people with high blood pressure (risk increases progressively with the increase in blood pressure) and poor blood sugar control. Diabetic nephropathy is a major cause of ill health, health problems and death in diabetes. The amount of protein in urine is a predictor of progress of kidney disease, associated problems and death in diabetes.

Heart disease and diabetic nephropathy: Presence of albumin in urine increases the overall risk of heart disease and death from cardiovascular disease (such as heart attack and stroke) and death from any cause in diabetes mellitus. Even in non-diabetics, the presence of small amount of albumin in urine (microalbuminuria) increases the risk of coronary, peripheral vascular disease and death from heart disease (cardiovascular disease). Studies show that people with diabetes who do not develop protein uria have low and stable death rate and the presence of protein uria increases the risk of death (40-fold higher risk of death).

Kidney failure and diabetic nephropathy: Everyone with diabetes does not develop kidney disease and everyone who develops diabetic kidney disease (diabetic nephropathy), does not progress to kidney failure. Severe damage to your kidneys can lead to kidney failure. Kidney failure (or end stage renal disease) is a major cause of death in people with type 1 DM and nephropathy. It causes about 59-66% of deaths in such patients. End stage renal disease (ESRD) affects survival in people with type 2 DM as well. Kidney failure (or end stage renal disease) is more common in people with type 1 diabetes than type 2 diabetes. According to studies, the end stage renal disease develops in about 50% of the patients with protein uria and type 1 DM and 10 years after the onset of protein uria as compared to about 10% in patients with type 2 DM and protein uria.


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