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World Kidney Day – An Introduction

World Kidney Day

World Kidney Day

World Kidney Day (WKD) is celebrated every year on the second Thursday of March. It is the global awareness campaign to raise awareness of the importance of kidneys to our health and to reduce the impact of kidney disease and its associated health problems worldwide. 1 in 10 people is affected by kidney disease globally.

World Kidney Day is a joint initiative of the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations (IFKF).

The theme of WKD 2018 is “Kidneys & Women’s Health: Include, Value, Empower”.

In 2018, World Kidney Day and International Women’s Day is marked on the same day, offering the opportunity to highlight the importance of women’s health and particularly their kidney health. WKD wants to promote affordable and equitable access to health education, care and prevention for all women and girls globally.

Kidneys & Women’s Health

  • Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is the 8th leading cause of death in women causing more than 600,000 female deaths in a year.
  • Chronic Kidney Disease affects approximately 195 million women worldwide.
  • CKD is more common in women compared with men, with an average 14% prevalence in women and 12% in men.
  • Some kidney diseases such as lupus nephropathy and kidney infection are more common in women.
  • The prevalence of CKD is rising and may affect 3% of women in their childbearing years.
  • Women who have CKD are at increased risk of negative health outcomes for the mother and the baby.
  • Pregnancy-related complications increase the risk of kidney disease; women who have preeclampsia are 4-to-5 times more likely to develop kidney failure.
  • In women who have received successful kidney transplants, fertility can be restored and pregnancy associated complications are much improved.
  • There is a clear need for higher awareness, timely diagnosis and proper follow up of CKD in pregnancy.


  • Early screening for hypertension and kidney disease should be offered to all women during preconception and prenatal visits.
  • Early screening for pre-eclampsia during pregnancy will help to reduce the impact of kidney disease.

What is Chronic Kidney Disease?

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a progressive loss in kidney function over a period of months or years. When kidney function falls below a certain point it is called kidney failure and untreated kidney failure can be life-threatening which requires dialysis or a kidney transplant to maintain life. Chronic kidney disease may be caused by diabetes, high blood pressure and other disorders. Early detection and treatment can often keep chronic kidney disease from getting worse.

You should know:

  • Kidney diseases are silent killers. Early chronic kidney disease has no signs or symptoms.
  • Chronic kidney disease usually does not go away.
  • Blood and urine tests are used to check for kidney disease.
  • Kidney disease can be treated. The earlier diagnosis of CKD gives better chances of receiving effective treatment.
  • Kidney disease can progress to kidney failure.

Pradhan Mantri National Dialysis Programme*:

National Dialysis Programme under National Health mission is an initiative of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, Government of India. It was rolled out in 2016 with involvement of public private partnership (PPPMode) at District Hospitals. The objective of this programme is to provide important life saving procedure close to the community and also for reducing impoverishment on account of out of pocket expenditure for patients.

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