Anyone can develop kidney disease, but some people are at greater risk. Kidney disease is most often caused by diabetes or high blood pressure, both of which can cause permanent harm to your kidneys. When your kidneys have been permanently damaged and aren’t functioning as well as they should, it’s called chronic kidney disease (CKD), or kidney disease for short.
Diabetes and high blood pressure are not the only things that can cause kidney disease. Another common risk for kidney disease is having heart (cardiovascular) disease.
Having a family history of kidney disease puts you at higher risk for developing kidney disease. African-American, Asian American, Native American, or people of Hispanic ethnicity have a greater chance of developing CKD.
People who are over the age of 60, have a higher risk as the kidneys lose some function naturally with time. In addition, those over 60 tend to have a higher risk for diabetes and high blood pressure, the two leading causes of kidney failure.
If you are at risk for kidney disease, ask your doctor how often you should be tested. If you catch and treat kidney disease early, you may be able to slow it down!