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Experts call for greater awareness of the links between diabetes and kidney disease
Date:2/9/2011

diabetes for between six months and 40 years, with an average time since diagnosis of just under 15 years. Male patients accounted for 61 per cent of the South Asian group and 64 per cent of the white group.

Key findings of the study, which was funded by Kidney Research UK and the Big Lottery Fund, included:

  • The South Asian patients tended to be a lot younger than the white patients, which is consistent with studies that suggest that South Asian patients develop diabetic-related kidney problems at an earlier age. The South Asian patients ranged from 34 to 86, with an average age of just over 67, while the white patients ranged from 51 to 86, with an average age of just under 73.

  • A lot of the patients were unaware of possible kidney problems before their referral to specialist services. "they were telling me that my kidneys could be affected because of the diabeteshe frightened me when he started talking about dialysis" said one South Asian male.

  • Many of the South Asian patients mentioned high levels of kidney problems and diabetes among friends and family, but few had realised the link between the two conditions. One South Asian female said she was only aware of the links because her brother was a doctor.

  • Patients often questioned why they had not been made more aware of the likelihood of kidney problems by the medical staff caring for them. "When you're first diabetic I think it should be made clear to youI think I would have been a different person if I'd known" said one white female.

  • Some saw their diagnosis as a wake-up call that they needed to manage their condition better, while others felt confused and frustrated as they sought to make sense of their diagnosis. One white male said he didn't understand the link between his diabetes and kidney problems and "nobody has really explained it to me at any time."

  • In general, patients felt that they had received limi
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Contact: Annette Whibley
wizard.media@virgin.net
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

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