Incidence and people at risk of chronic renal failure


It has been estimated that 10% of the world’s population has some degree of CKD. From this statistic, it is believed that around five million South Africans older than age 20 years have CKD, with the figure in black South Africans almost certainly being higher, according to an article in the February 2015 issue of the South African Medical Journal (SAMJ). 

What is significant in South Africa is that we have very high prevalence rates of three important diseases that put people at risk of CKD, i.e. hypertension, type 2 diabetes mellitus and HIV. While some risk factors like age, male sex and hereditary kidney disease cannot be controlled, others like diabetes and hypertension can be treated and may slow down or prevent kidney damage. 

Risk factors for patients who already have CRF include hypertension, diabetes, a high-protein diet and high blood fats like cholesterol and triglycerides. These patients should also avoid analgesics and anti-inflammatory drugs.

Reviewed and revised by Professor A M Meyers, MBBCh, FCP (SA), Cert Nephrology (SA), FRCP (London), Donald Gordon Medical Centre, Klerksdorp Hospital, and National Kidney Foundation of South Africa, March 2015.

Originally written by Dr K. Coetzee, reviewed by Dr R. Moosa, Tygerberg Academic Hospital

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