More than 20,000 Australians will die this year of the 'silent killer' - chronic kidney disease, prompting new awareness campaign
Most Australians who have indicators of chronic kidney disease have no idea they have a potentially life-threatening disease, experts warn.
One Australian dies every 25 minutes with kidney related disease, dubbed a `silent killer' as often there's no warning signs.
People can lose up to 90 per cent of their kidney function before experiencing any symptoms.
This has prompted a new Kidney Health Australia campaign, Operation 2590, promoting the importance of early detection.
"If chronic kidney disease (CKD) can be detected early and managed appropriately, then the otherwise inevitable deterioration in kidney function can be reduced by as much as 50 per cent and may even be reversible," said CEO Anne Wilson.
Less than 10 per cent of the estimated 1.7 million Australians who have indicators of CKD are aware they have a potentially life-threatening disease, she said.
Operation 2590 is aimed at raising awareness of the importance for those in high risk groups to ask their doctor for a regular kidney health check.
Very general signs that may indicate reduced kidney function include changes in the amount and number of times urine is passed, pain in your kidney area, itching, and bad breath with a metallic taste in the mouth.
One in three adult Australians are at an increased risk of developing CKD, while experts estimate more than 20,000 with the condition will die this year.
ADULTS ARE AT INCREASED RISK IF THEY:
* have diabetes
* have high blood pressure
* have established heart problems and/or have had a stroke
* have a family history of kidney failure
* are obese
* are 60 or older
* are of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin.