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National Kidney Month: Vascular Care Community Stresses PAD Risks in Patients with Chronic Kidney Disease

Mar 12, 2020

Minority populations with CKD are at a much higher risk than the general population of developing peripheral artery disease (PAD)

WASHINGTON – The Cardiovascular Coalition (CVC), a coalition of cardiovascular and endovascular care providers, physicians and manufacturers created to improve awareness, prevention, and intervention of vascular disease, urges increased awareness for kidney health and better understanding of related health conditions including Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) in recognition of National Kidney Month.

Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) is the ninth leading cause of death in the United States affecting an estimated 30 million American adults, a number that has been on the rise. Studies have shown that PAD is especially prevalent in patients with CKD, more so than the general population. PAD causes narrowing or blockage of the vessels that carry blood from the heart to the legs and other extremities and can eventually lead to amputation, if left untreated.

In the United States, approximately 20 million Americans have been diagnosed with PAD. Much like CKD, PAD disproportionately affects racial minorities due to higher prevalence of diabetes, limited access to appropriate clinical intervention and other underlying risk factors. The most at-risk groups for developing CKD, and eventually kidney failure, include African Americans, Hispanic and Native Americans, Pacific Islanders, and seniors. Similarly, elderly patients of color suffer from a disproportionately high rate of PAD.

“Understanding the correlation between PAD and CKD is especially critical for older Americans who often suffer from multiple comorbidities including hypertension and diabetes, which represent two of the most significant risk factors for these chronic conditions,” said Jeffrey G. Carr, MD, FACC. “I commend educational efforts to address general awareness and understanding of both CKD and PAD, especially by lawmakers in Congress who are ushering in policy change through both the Congressional Kidney Caucus and Congressional PAD Caucus.”

Studies have shown that patients with CKD are less likely to receive ‘optimal’ PAD care, underscoring the need for increased understanding of PAD by all stakeholders. Without the proper clinical care, PAD can lead to non-traumatic lower limb amputations, which data show lead to lower quality of life, increased mortality and higher healthcare costs.

“We look forward to our continued work with community stakeholders and bipartisan leaders in Congress to create a better understanding of PAD as well as public policies that encourage and support access to clinically-appropriate PAD screening and intervention, especially among our nation’s most at risk populations,” added Carr.

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