Kidney Health for All
Though complicated yet amazing organs, Kidneys, carry out many essential functions to keep our body healthy. Each of the kidneys is roughly the size of our fist, located deep inside the abdomen, beneath the rib cage.
The main role kidneys play is in removal of toxins and excess water from our blood, control blood pressure, produce red blood cells, and keep our bones healthy. Kidneys control blood stream levels of many minerals and molecules including sodium and potassium, and help to control blood acidity. Every day our kidneys carefully maintain the balance of the salt and water levels to keep our blood pressure under control.
In short, kidneys not only make urine but also remove wastes and extra fluid from the blood, control chemical balance in the body, help in controlling blood pressure, keep the bones healthy, and make red blood cells, too.
World Kidney Day is a global campaign aimed at raising awareness of the importance of kidneys for our health. This day is a joint initiative of the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and International Federation of Kidney Foundations (IFKF). The celebration highlights the importance of kidneys to our overall health and to reduce the frequency and impact of kidney disease and its associated health problems worldwide.
The objectives behind the World Kidney Day include;
- Raising awareness about amazing kidneys and highlighting that diabetes and high blood pressure are key risk factors for Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)
- Encouraging systematic screening of all patients with diabetes and hypertension for CKD
- Encouraging preventive behaviours
- Educating all medical professionals about their key role in detecting and reducing the risk of CKD, particularly in high-risk populations
- Stressing upon the important role of local and national health authorities in controlling the CKD epidemic
- Encouraging transplantation as a best-outcome option for kidney failure, and the act of organ donation as a life-saving initiative
CKD is common and harmful: One out of ten adult people worldwide have it, and if left untreated it can be deadly. While early detection allows for disease care and management to help prevent morbidity and mortality, and improve cost effectiveness and sustainability, kidney disease related mortality continues to increase yearly and is projected to be the fifth leading cause of death by 2040. A persistent and ongoing CKD knowledge gap exists, one that is demonstrable at all levels of healthcare; the community, the healthcare worker, and the public health policy makers. This knowledge gap is stifling the fight against kidney disease, and increasing the inherent associated mortality.
In light of these facts, the theme for World Kidney Day 2022 – Kidney Health for All is aptly stated as Bridge the Knowledge Gap to Better Kidney Care.