Kidney damage affecting 40% of people with diabetes, new study 17 June 2021 New research out of Ireland has found 42% of people who attended a diabetes clinic in that country have signs of established chronic kidney disease. 4,500 people in Ireland took part in the study done by the National University of Ireland. The findings suggest that despite careful management, many people with diabetes in Ireland are developing chronic kidney disease and are at risk of kidney failure and other complications. In Australia, almost 330,000 people with diabetes are living with chronic kidney disease. That’s more than 20% of people with diabetes. Diabetes is also the number one cause of chronic kidney disease in the world. Professor Josephine Forbes leads the Diabetes Complications Research Group at Mater Research, her work explores the links between kidney disease and diabetes. “Between 30 and 40% of people with diabetes develop kidney disease, which depends on how old they are at diagnosis and whether they have type 1 diabetes or type 2 diabetes. Almost half of all cases of people with diabetes kidney disease will one day need a kidney transplant or dialysis,” said Professor Forbes. “Kidney disease occurs because factors such as high levels of glucose in the blood, as seen in diabetes, damage the kidneys and stop them from working properly. “In the long-term, diabetic kidney disease often causes cardiovascular disease. It is the major risk factor for heart attacks, strokes and death in people with diabetes.” The study in Ireland shows that the rate of chronic kidney disease among people with diabetes is higher than previously thought and that more testing, management and collaborative care is needed for people with diabetes. In Australia, it is estimated that less than 30% of people with diabetes are getting regular kidney checks. Diabetes Australia and Kidney Health Australia are encouraging people to make an appointment with their GP today to talk about their kidney health. One way to start your journey to better kidney health is by taking Kidney Health Australia’s Kidney Health Check. Why not get your kidneys checked today? The study is published in the BMJ Open Diabetes Research and Care.