About End Stage Renal Disease

It is humbling to have End Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) also known as “kidney failure.”   I am on hemodialysis in order to clear my blood of waste products and remove excess fluids from my body.  Without hemodialysis, I would die within a week. 

According to the U.S. Renal Data System 2008 Report, I have a 20% chance of dying this year. At 42 years of age, I have a life expectancy on dialysis of 8.4 years.  I can also expect to be hospitalized at least two times in the next year (I'm already at my quota for 2008).  I am also at greatly increased risk of heart disease, bone disease, infection, sepsis, and pneumonia. 

The only chance I have to extend my life is a kidney transplant.  With a kidney transplant, my life expectancy rises to 23.7 years.

How likely are kidney transplants?
  • 400,000 people in the U.S. are being treated for end stage kidney failure.
  • 78,488 people wait on kidney transplants lists as of February 2009.
  • Only 15,084 lucky people were receipients of kidney transplants in 2008.
  • 5,386 are from living donors and 9,698 from deceased donors.
  • Nearly 6,700 people died waiting for  kidney transplants in 2007 (latest data).

*DATA SOURCE: United Network for Organ Sharing

Do you begin to see the gap? in some areas, like California, the wait for an organ can be 7-10 years.

Why should you care?
Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD), the precursor for ESRD, is far more prevalent than most people realize. 

ScienceDaily (Oct. 9, 2008) — "A 30 percent increase in chronic kidney disease over the past decade has prompted the U.S. Renal Data System (USRDS) to issue for the first time a separate report documenting the magnitude of the disease, which affects an estimated 27 million Americans."

Fun Facts:
  • Early detection can help prevent the progression of kidney disease to kidney failure.
  • Hypertension causes CKD and CKD causes hypertension.
  • High risk groups include those with diabetes, hypertension and family history of kidney disease.
  • African Americans, Hispanics, Pacific Islanders, Native Americans and Seniors are at increased risk.

Be a hero.  Be a donor.  Click the links on this page to learn more about organ donation and kidney disease.  Please contribute to the National Kidney Foundation today.

Three simple tests
can detect CKD:
  • Blood pressure
  • Urine albumin
  • Serum creatinine
© 2008/2009 Jon E. Seaman, All Rights Reserved

© 2008/2009 Jon E. Seaman, All Rights Reserved

© 2008-2011 Jon E. Seaman, All Rights Reserved