American Society of Nephrology, Nov. 11-16

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The Annual Meeting of the American Society of Nephrology, Kidney Week 2014

The annual meeting of the American Society of Nephrology (Kidney Week) was held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia and attracted approximately 13,000 participants from around the world, including nephrology specialists, researchers, scientists, and other health care professionals. The conference featured presentations focusing on the latest advances in the management of patients with kidney diseases and related disorders.

In one study, Oleh Akchurin, M.D., of the Weill Cornell Medical College in New York City, and colleagues found that teenagers with kidney disorders have access to smartphone-based technologies that may already be helpful in improving medication adherence; however, many existing resources (such as available mobile apps) remain underutilized.

"About half of the teenagers with kidney disorders reported using smartphones to help themselves taking prescribed medications. However, awareness about health-related mobile apps remains low," Akchurin said.

The investigators found that using smartphones for medication management was associated with better self-reported medication adherence and also with the utilization of other techniques for taking medications more regularly.

"Clinicians may want to inquire about the techniques that families have utilized for medication management and provide counseling regarding available tools," Akchurin added. "Future studies are needed to clarify the specific ways patients are using their smartphones for health care purposes, as well as to test the effectiveness of most promising smartphone-based technologies."

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In another study, Alex Chang, M.D., of the Geisinger Medical Center in Danville, Pa., and colleagues found that kidney function, estimated by serum creatinine, improved after bariatric surgery, particularly in patients with baseline kidney disease.

"Kidney function may improve after bariatric surgery, but more research is needed to confirm these findings since estimation of kidney function using current methods may be influenced by changes in muscle mass," said Chang. "More research is needed comparing surgical to non-surgical weight loss as treatment options for slowing kidney disease before giving any strong recommendations for bariatric surgery to slow kidney disease."

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Jennifer Bragg-Gresham, Ph.D., of the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, and colleagues found a possible link between air pollution and chronic kidney disease. Using air-quality data for all U.S. counties provided by the Environmental Protection Agency and Medicare claims data, the investigators found a positive association between the prevalence of diagnosed chronic kidney disease and county level of particulate matter less than 2.5 micrometers in diameter. This finding remained true after controlling for major patient-level risk factors for chronic kidney disease such as age, diabetes, and hypertension.

"The association is found at air-quality index levels that are much lower than that typically considered unhealthy for sensitive groups such as the elderly," said Bragg-Gresham. "Our ability to make a causal inference about the effect of air pollution on the risk or progression of chronic kidney disease is limited, however, due to our study's cross-sectional design, the lack of individual exposure data, and uncontrolled confounding."

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Roberto Pisoni, M.D., of the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, and colleagues found that being at high risk for obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is common in patients with non-dialysis-dependent chronic kidney disease due to diabetic nephropathy, and is associated with faster decline of kidney function over time.

"Clinicians should be aware that there is a high prevalence of being at risk for OSA in subjects with chronic kidney disease due to diabetic nephropathy, and they should consider screening these patients for OSA," Pisoni said. "Further studies are needed to confirm that having OSA, and not just having a risk score for it, is associated with faster decline in kidney function, and, if so, if treatment of OSA with continuous positive airway pressure would help to slow the kidney function decline."

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In a population-based study, Anthony Bleyer, M.D., of the Wake Forest School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, N.C., and colleagues found that, even if they were willing, most people in the United States aren't qualified to be kidney donors because of health or financial reasons.

"The majority of individuals in the United States cannot donate, and this is due to preventable health problems in many cases," Bleyer said in an American Society of Nephrology news release. "Lower-income people need transplants more commonly, but individuals from these economic strata are less likely to donate because of more health problems, finances, and immigration status."

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ASN: ACE Inhibitor Adequate for BP Control in ADPKD

TUESDAY, Nov. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with autosomal dominant polycystic kidney disease (ADPKD), the addition of telmisartan to lisinopril is not associated with improved outcomes or with a reduction in blood pressure, according to two studies published online Nov. 15 in the New England Journal of Medicine. The research was published to coincide with the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Levofloxacin Doesn't Halt Post-Transplant BK Viruria

TUESDAY, Nov. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A three-month course of levofloxacin does not prevent BK viral reactivation in the urine (BK viruria) in kidney transplant recipients, according to a study published online Nov. 15 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The research was published to coincide with the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Home Dialysis Therapies Beat In-Center Hemodialysis

TUESDAY, Nov. 18, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Home dialysis therapies seem to be more beneficial than in-center hemodialysis, according to a study presented at the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Aspirin, Clonidine Don't Cut Post-Op Kidney Injury Risk

MONDAY, Nov. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For patients undergoing non-cardiac surgery, neither aspirin nor clonidine reduces the risk of acute kidney injury, according to a study published online Nov. 15 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The research was published to coincide with the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Low Sodium Meats Often Have High Potassium Content

MONDAY, Nov. 17, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Sodium-reduced meat and poultry products frequently have higher potassium content than their non-sodium-reduced counterparts, according to a study presented at the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Sickle Cell Trait Linked to Risk of Chronic Kidney Disease

FRIDAY, Nov. 14, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- For African-Americans, sickle cell trait (SCT) is associated with increased risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD), according to a review published online Nov. 13 in the Journal of the American Medical Association. The research was published to coincide with the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Many Dialysis Patients Ill-Prepared for Emergencies

THURSDAY, Nov. 13, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Although their health depends on working technology, many kidney-failure patients on dialysis are not prepared for natural disasters or other emergencies, according to findings scheduled to be presented at the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Urinary Tract Birth Defects Tied to Maternal Obesity

TUESDAY, Nov. 4, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A woman's odds of having a baby with kidney and urinary tract birth defects are higher if she's obese, new research suggests. The findings are to be presented Nov. 14 at the annual meeting of the American Society of Nephrology (Kidney Week), held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Home Blood Pressure Monitors May Be Missing the Mark

TUESDAY, Oct. 28, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- A new small study raises more questions about the accuracy of home blood pressure monitoring devices. The research is scheduled to be presented at the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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ASN: Binge Drinking May Boost Blood Pressure in Young Men

TUESDAY, Oct. 21, 2014 (HealthDay News) -- Binge drinking among young adult men may lead to hypertension, according to new research scheduled to be presented at the American Society of Nephrology's Kidney Week 2014, held from Nov. 11 to 16 in Philadelphia.

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