Acute Kidney Injury in the Elderly: Epidemiology, Risk Factors and Outcomes
- *Corresponding Author:
- Antonio Del Giudice, MD
Division of Nephrology and Dialysis
IRCCS Casa Sollievo della Sofferenza, Viale Cappuccini
71013 San Giovanni Rotondo, Italy
E-mail: [email protected]
Received Date: September 21, 2012; Accepted Date: December 28, 2012; Published Date: December 31, 2012
Citation: Del Giudice A, Piemontese M, Valente G, Prencipe M, Di Giorgio C, et al. (2012) Acute Kidney Injury in the Elderly: Epidemiology, Risk Factors and Outcomes. J Nephrol Therapeut 2:129. doi:10.4172/2161-0959.1000129
Copyright: © 2012 Del Giudice A, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.
Structural and functional changes affecting the aging kidney predispose to an increased risk of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) in the elderly, a condition which is becoming more and more relevant with the increase in life expectancy. The epidemiology of AKI in the elderly is not well assessed, because of the variable etiology, the coexistence of several comorbidities, the various clinical settings and geographical areas where the condition is managed, and the lack of uniform definition criteria. Currently, the use of the term AKI is suggested to mean any abrupt reduction in kidney function, while acute renal failure is just meant to indicate severe dysfunctions requiring renal replacement treatment. Comorbidities, common among elderly patients and several age-related conditions are risk factors for AKI. Moreover, also in elderly patients the presence of baseline proteinuria and reduced glomerular filtration rate are both powerful independent risk factors for AKI. Elderly patients with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) who develop AKI are at high risk for mortality, non-recovery from AKI and progression to more advanced stages of CKD and even to endstage renal disease. As a consequence, the challenge for nephrologists is to find strategies to either prevent AKI or prevent the transition from AKI to CKD.