March is designated National Kidney Month to raise awareness about the prevention and early detection of kidney disease.
In 2013, kidney diseases were the ninth leading cause of death in the United States with 47,112 deaths. There were about 3.9 million people in the U.S diagnosed with kidney disease making up 1.7% of non-institutionalized adults.
More than 10% (more than 20 million) of U.S. adults aged 20 years or older have chronic kidney disease (CKD), and most of them are unaware of their condition (2,3). Major risk factors for CKD include aging, diabetes, and high blood pressure. If left untreated, CKD can lead to kidney failure, requiring dialysis or transplantation for survival. However, controlling diabetes and high blood pressure can prevent or delay CKD and improve health outcomes.