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Transplant Proc. 1993 Aug;25(4):2415-20.

Risk factors for end-stage renal disease among minorities.

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Department of Medicine, Highland General Hospital, Oakland, California 94602-1098.


Blacks, Hispanics, and American Indians are at increased risk of ESRD. Among blacks, hypertension, type II DM, and possibly type I DM are classic risk factors and pose an increased risk for disease. A unifying concept in both DM and hypertension appears to be increased glomerular pressures. The role of diuretics as an independent risk factor for ESRD is further advanced. At a minimum diuretics appear not to be renal protective. Glomerulonephritis also occurs more commonly in blacks. The underlying pathology is largely unknown. There is an increased rate of HAN- and HIV-associated nephropathy which does not explain the excess risk. Patterns of referral or other biases may be in effect. The increased incidence of ESRD in Hispanics is mainly related to DM although, hypertension also plays a role. There is also evidence that HIV-associated nephropathy may occur relatively more often than in whites. We have alluded to the increased incidence of ESRD among American Indians and noted that diabetes mellitus occurs more commonly in most tribal groups while glomerulonephritis occurs more frequently in the Zuni. That groups at increased risk of ESRD are at the lower spectrum of the SES raises this issue as a common risk factor for disease. It is unlikely that SES is an independent risk factor. Education, access to early interventions, and social behavioral factors must be incorporated into any model which proposes a reduction in the rate of ESRD in these groups. The treatment of hypertension with medications that may be renal protective or pose increased risk, especially insofar as diuretics are concerned, must be considered urgent grounds for future research.

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