A new study published in Lancet Diabetes and Endocrinology suggests that simple tests designed to assess kidney function and damage could be JUST as effective at predicting your risk of heart problems as traditional forms of testing that measure blood pressure and cholesterol levels…
Study author Kunihiro Matsushita, an assistant scientist in the Bloomberg School's of Department of Epidemiology, reports: “If health care providers have data on kidney damage and kidney function - which they often do - they should be using those data to better understand a patient's risk of cardiovascular disease,”
That's right - the condition your kidneys are in can say a lot about your heart… Read on to find out more.
People with unhealthy kidney are twice as likely to develop heart disease
Researchers report that patients with chronic kidney disease are twice as likely to develop heart disease
than those whose kidneys are healthy. According to the authors, roughly 50% of kidney disease patients die of heart problem before they develop end-stage renal disease.
Dr Matsushita explains that while traditionally-used blood pressure
tests and cholesterol levels are good indicators of cardiovascular risk, they’re not perfect.
“This study tells us we could do even better with information that we’re oftentimes already collecting,” he says.
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A simple blood or urine test could determine your heart disease risk
Two key tests that help define and stage chronic kidney disease identified by researchers are those that check your blood for creatinine and those that measure the amount of albumin in your urine.
Creatinine is a waste product of your muscles. The amount of it that’s in your blood indicates how well your kidneys are filtering it out of your body.
Albumin, on the other hand, is a protein that leaks out of your kidney and into your urine. If there are high amounts of this protein present, it’s likely that you have damaged kidneys.
According to the researchers, the data these tests provide can determine more than just the state of your kidneys. They say they can also help doctors determine if you’re at risk of developing heart disease.
Unfortunately, researchers weren’t able to prove cause-and-effect for this study. They do, however, say that follow-up research is on the way to explain the association between kidney and heart health.
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