Epidemiology of non-dialysis-requiring chronic kidney disease and cardiovascular disease

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Abstract

Purpose of review

To review recent literature about the relationship between non-dialysis-requiring chronic kidney disease and cardiovascular disease as well as possible explanatory factors.

Recent findings

Reduced estimated glomerular filtration rate below 60 ml/min/1.73 m2 independently predicts the risk of death and cardiovascular events in persons with or without known cardiovascular disease as well as those undergoing coronary or peripheral arterial revascularization. This risk is not linearly associated with level of kidney function. Chronic kidney disease is associated with a larger burden of traditional vascular risk factors but is also linked to abnormalities in a variety of nontraditional pathways such as dysregulation of mineral metabolism and arterial calcification, vessel stiffness and endothelial dysfunction, insulin resistance, inflammation, malnutrition, and anemia, among others. Other novel kidney-specific proteins (e.g. renalase) may play direct mediating roles. The relative contribution of these factors to excess cardiovascular disease in chronic kidney disease remains unclear.

Summary

Recent evidence demonstrates the importance of non-dialysis-requiring chronic kidney disease as a potent predictor of cardiovascular disease and its complications. Randomized trials should be performed to determine whether modification of traditional and nontraditional risk factors can reduce incident cardiovascular disease as well as which interventions can optimize treatment outcomes in persons with chronic kidney disease and cardiovascular disease.

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