“AKI, defined as sudden deterioration in kidney function leading to kidney failure, is not uncommon and significantly increases the risk of morbidity and mortality” says Charuhas Thakar, director of the division of nephrology at the UC College of Medicine and senior author of the study.
Of the patients with kidney failure due to AKI, 35% eventually recovered their kidney function, 95% of those within 12 months. Women had a 14% lower likelihood of kidney recovery than did men. Blacks, Asians, Hispanics and Native Americans had lower likelihoods of kidney recovery as compared to white.
“This study suggests the need for developing customizable treatment strategies for patients with kidney failure due to AKI; in particular, focusing on factors promoting kidney recovery,” says Thakar. “This research significantly contributes to improving the current knowledge gap in this area.”
Shah says the study is unique in that it addresses a comprehensive group of patients from a national database to better understand the outcome of kidney failure due to AKI. Additionally, the analysis of kidney recovery focused on the associations between sex and race and the chances of recovery.
“Our findings suggest lower kidney recovery rates in women and among minorities,” says Shah. “Given the differences observed across sex and race, further studies of the possible cultural and social contributors and strategies to improve clinical monitoring of patients with kidney failure due to AKI for kidney recovery may have to be specifically directed to that population subgroup.”
In addition to Thakar, assisting in the research were Annette Christianson and Karthikeyan Meganathan, research associates in the UC Department of Environmental Health; Anthony Leonard, PhD, research associate professor in the UC Department of Family and Community Medicine; and Kathleen Harrison, senior clinical researcher in the UC Division of Nephrology and Hypertension. Shah is supported by funds from the UC Division of Nephrology.