Chronic Kidney Disease
(CKD; Chronic Renal Disease)
by Amy Scholten, MPH
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is when the kidneys do not filter blood the right way. It happens over a long period of time. This causes waste to build up in the body and leads to other health problems.
CKD is caused by damage or disease in the kidneys. Common causes include:
CFD is more common in older adults. Smoking and alcohol use disorder are the main risk factors. Other things that may raise the risk are:
CKD may cause problems such as:
The doctor will ask about symptoms and health history. A physical exam may be done. Blood and urine tests will be done to see how well the kidneys are working.
Other tests will be done to find a cause. You may need to see a doctor who treats kidney diseases.
There is no cure. The goal of treatment is to prevent or slow damage and manage problems. Options are:
The doctor may advise stopping or changing any medicines that hurt the kidneys.
Medicines may be given to:
The doctor may advise:
People with severe CKD may need:
To lower the risk of CKD:
National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases
National Kidney Foundation
The Kidney Foundation of Canada
Chronic kidney disease. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. Available at: https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/kidney-disease/chronic-kidney-disease-ckd. Accessed December 28, 2020.
Chronic kidney disease (CKD) in adults. EBSCO DynaMed website. Available at: https://www.dynamed.com/condition/overview-of-chronic-kidney-disease-ckd-in-adults. Accessed December 28, 2020.
Gaitonde DY, Cook DL, Rivera IM. Chronic kidney disease: detection and evaluation. Am Fam Physician. 2017;96(12):776-783.
Last reviewed September 2020 by EBSCO Medical Review Board Adrienne Carmack, MD