World Kidney Day

Living with Kidney Disease

While reading this article your kidneys filter about half a liter of blood (120 mL/minute). Kidneys are such efficient organs that people can sustain a normal and healthy life with only one kidney. Therefore, it is even possible for healthy individuals to donate one of their kidneys to people with severe kidney disease or kidney failure.

In kidney disease, patients suffer from constant loss of kidney function. As the filter capacities of one healthy kidney is sufficient, patients are rarely affected by early signs or symptoms of chronic kidney disease (CKD). To slow or even stop the progression of CKD, and maintain the remaining kidney function, early diagnosis and constant monitoring of kidney function is important.

The most common method to access kidney function is the measurement of creatinine in blood and urine. Serum creatinine levels begin to rise above the normal ranges when kidney function is already decreased by 50% and creatinine levels are dependent on age, sex, diet and other factors. Creatinine is also used to estimate the glomerular filtration rate (GFR), but has weaknesses in the “creatinine blind-range” defined by a GFR of 40 to 80 mL/min/1.73m², early stages of CKD and some patient groups. The use of additional parameters is recommended and implemented by the KDIGO.

Cystatin C is less influenced by these factors and appears to correlate better to the GFR in this range. Therefore, Cystatin C is more sensitive for the identification of mild to moderately impaired kidney function, and suitable for the detection of early stages of kidney impairment.

Slightly abnormal levels of albumin in urine, known as microalbuminuria, additionally serve as an early indicator of chronic injury of the glomeruli, early CKD, or temporary overload of kidney function.

High blood pressure and diabetes are the most common causes and risk factors for CKD, followed by inflammatory processes, infections and some medications. These risk factors should be addressed and monitored to avoid loss of kidney function.
HbA1c values represent long-term blood glucose levels over the previous 8 - 12 weeks and are an important marker in diabetes management.

DiaSys provides high quality, ready-to-use diagnostic reagents for the mentioned markers. Please follow the links for more information on DiaSys reagents:

Cystatin C FS
Albumin in Urine/CSF FS
HbA1c net FS
oneHbA1c FS
one HbA1c IS
Creatinine FS
Creatinine PAP FS