Researchers Publish Findings on Study of How Living Conditions Affect Black Kidney Patients

NKF Logo (PRNewsfoto/National Kidney Foundation)

A team of five researchers published a new study in the American Journal of Kidney Diseases (AJKD) that suggests kidney health for black patients may depend on where they live.

Their study that looked at 10 years of data on thousands of people with chronic kidney disease (CKD) draws a possible connection for the rate of decline in kidney health over time for black people living in neighborhoods with more social problems than other communities.

The article, titled “Neighborhood Social Context and Kidney Function Over Time: The Multi-Ethnic Study of Atherosclerosis (MESA)” will be one of the month’s highlights in the AJKD, which is the official journal of the National Kidney Foundation (NKF), and is devoted to clinical nephrology and research.

“Further study is needed to understand how neighborhoods affect renal health,” said one of the authors, Margaret T. Hicken of the Survey Research Center, Institute for Social Research, University of Michigan. “Is it through the perception of one’s neighborhood as a good place to live? Or is it through more objective factors, such as resources that support a healthy life?

“It is well-documented that black adults have greater CKD compared to white adults and that, due to tremendously high levels of racial segregation in the U.S., black and white adults live in neighborhoods of very unequal quality.

“I am hoping that these results reinforce the need to study the role of neighborhood context when it comes to racial inequalities in CKD,” Hicken said.

Data from about 6,000 men and women with CKD gathered by MESA was analyzed by the team. In addition to Hicken, the authors were Ronit Katz of the Kidney Research Institute, University of Washington; Carmen A. Peralta of The Kidney Health Research Collaborative at the University of California, San Francisco and San Francisco VA Medical Center; Deidra C. Crews, Division of Nephrology, Department of Medicine, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Johns Hopkins Center for Health Equity, Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions; and Holly Mattix-Kramer, MD, Department of Nephrology and Hypertension, Loyola University School of Medicine.

“We have realized over the past several years that genetic variance does not fully explain racial differences in kidney disease risk and we cannot ignore the strong operative role of socioeconomic factors in health,” said Mattix-Kramer, who is also the President of NKF.

The AJKD article will be freely available online for non-subscribers for 90 days. For information about becoming an NKF member subscriber, go to

Source via PR Newswire

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