Testing and Treatment: Find it Early, Treat it Early

  • Test for CKD regularly in people who have diabetes, high blood pressure, or other risk factors for CKD. People with CKD may not feel ill or notice any symptoms until CKD is advanced.
  • The only way to find out if people have CKD is through simple blood and urine tests. The blood test checks for the level of creatinine, a waste product produced by muscles, to see how well the kidneys work. The urine test checks for protein, which may indicate kidney damage.
  • Following a healthy diet and taking medicine for diabetes, medicine for high blood pressure, and other medications to protect the kidneys may keep CKD from getting worse and may prevent other health problems such as heart disease.
  • Blood pressure–lowering medications are recommended for people with diabetes and CKD. However, the percentage of adults with CKD and diagnosed diabetes who are prescribed blood pressure–lowering medications is less than ideal.
    • Prescription of blood pressure–lowering medications is higher in people with CKD and diagnosed diabetes aged 45 years or older (about 70%) than in those aged 18–44 years (30%).
    • Prescription of blood pressure–lowering medications is similar in adult women and men with CKD and diagnosed diabetes (about 50%).
    • Prescription of blood pressure–lowering medications is higher in non-Hispanic Black adults with CKD and diagnosed diabetes (63%) than in non-Hispanic White adults (37%) or non-Hispanic Asian adults (32%).
    • About 47% of Hispanic adults with CKD and diagnosed diabetes are prescribed blood pressure–lowering medications.

Percentage of US Adults Aged 18 Years or Older With CKD and Diagnosed Diabetes Who Were Prescribed Blood Pressure–Lowering Medications, by Age, Sex, and Race/Ethnicity

graph described above

Angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors or angiotensin II receptor blockers using data from the 2015–2018 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. For more details on the methods, see ‘How the Estimates Were Calculated.’

Page last reviewed: March 4, 2021