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National Kidney Month and World Kidney Day

March is National Kidney Month in the United States, and March 12 is World Kidney Day. Both commemorations are intended to raise awareness of kidney disease and the importance of prevention and early detection. Kidney disease is the ninth leading cause of death in the United States (1), but persons with chronic kidney disease (CKD) are more likely to die from cardiovascular disease than develop kidney failure (2).

In 2000, approximately 26 million U.S. adults had CKD (3). However, in 1999--2004, only 42% of adults with severe kidney disease (stage 4) and fewer than 10% of those with less severe disease (stages 1--3) were aware of their conditions (4). CDC, in collaboration with partners, has developed the Chronic Kidney Disease Initiative, including surveillance and screening projects and studies of CKD costs. Additional information is available at

This year, World Kidney Day focuses on high blood pressure, which, along with diabetes, is a leading cause of CKD (3). Information regarding kidney disease is available from the National Kidney Disease Education Program at Information regarding World Kidney Day activities is available at


  1. Heron MP, Hoyert DL, Xu J, Scott C, Tejada-Vera B. Deaths: preliminary data for 2006. Natl Vital Stat Rep 2008;56(16):4--5.
  2. Collins AJ, Li S, Gilbertson DT, Liu J, Chen SC, Herzog CA. Chronic kidney disease and cardiovascular disease in the Medicare population. Kidney Int Suppl 2003;87:S24--31.
  3. Coresh J, Selvin E, Stevens LA, et al. Prevalence of chronic kidney disease in the United States. JAMA 2007;298:2038--47.
  4. Plantinga LC, Boulware LE, Coresh J, et al. Patient awareness of chronic kidney disease: trends and predictors. Arch Intern Med 2008;168:2268--75.

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Date last reviewed: 3/5/2009


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