Kidney Disease Made Worse By Mineral Metabolism Issues

Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a dangerous disease that leads to the progressive loss of kidney function. Doctors often find it very difficult to work out how CKD will progress with some cases developing advanced stages of the disease, while others will become more stable as time passes.

A new study published in the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology suggests not only a strong like between disordered mineral metabolism and CKD getting worse, but also that black patients have a stronger risk of kidney failure from the disease.

Disordered mineral metabolism happens when failing kidneys do not maintain the proper levels of minerals in the blood. One of the benefits from the study was the fact the researchers suggested measuring mineral metabolites may be a useful way to determine the progression path of CKD. The findings also revealed that targeting mineral metabolism could be a way of slowing the progress of the disease.

Although it’s not known exactly why, it is known that CKD is more likely to quickly progress to kidney failure among black patients. However, problems with mineral metabolism seem to also be more common among black patients. This could suggest at least part of the reason as to why black patients are at a greater risk of kidney failure from CKD. The researchers suggested that more study into the area would be required to confirm this.

The team of researchers studied blood levels of a number of mineral metabolites over an average of four years. They looked at 420 CKD patients who had participated in the African American Study of Kidney Disease and Hypertension. The findings confirmed that levels of FGF23, PTH, and phosphate all increased over time. Also, 95% of the patients had a deficiency in vitamin D. Overall, this showed the researchers that abnormal levels of minerals can convey information for assessing the likely progression of CKD.

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