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1.  Poverty and Racial Disparities in Kidney Disease: The REGARDS Study 
American Journal of Nephrology  2010;32(1):38-46.
There are pronounced disparities among black compared to white Americans for risk of end-stage renal disease. This study examines whether similar relationships exist between poverty and racial disparities in chronic kidney disease (CKD) prevalence.
We studied 22,538 participants in the REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) cohort study. We defined individual poverty as family income below USD 15,000 and a neighborhood as poor if 25% or more of the households were below the federal poverty level.
As the estimated glomerular filtration rate (GFR) declined from 50–59 to 10–19 ml/min/ 1.73 m2, the black:white odds ratio (OR) for impaired kidney function increased from 0.74 (95% CI 0.66, 0.84) to 2.96 (95% CI 1.96, 5.57). Controlling for individual income below poverty, community poverty, demographic and comorbid characteristics attenuated the black:white prevalence to an OR of 0.65 (95% CI 0.57, 0.74) among individuals with a GFR of 59–50 ml/min/1.73 m2 and an OR of 2.21 (95% CI 1.25, 3.93) among individuals with a GFR between 10 and 19 ml/min/ 1.73 m2.
Household, but not community poverty, was independently associated with CKD and attenuated but did not fully account for differences in CKD prevalence between whites and blacks.
PMCID: PMC2914392  PMID: 20516678
Chronic kidney disease; Poverty; Racial disparities
2.  Physical and Psychological Burden of Chronic Kidney Disease among Older Adults 
American Journal of Nephrology  2010;31(4):309-317.
The purpose of the study is to determine if functional status and quality of life (QoL) vary with glomerular filtration rate (GFR) among older adults.
We studied adults aged 45 years and older participating in the REasons for Geographic And Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) cohort study. Data included demographic and health information, serum creatinine and hemoglobin, the 4-item Center for Epidemiologic Studies Depression Scale (CES-D-4), the 4-item Cohen's Perceived Stress Scale (PSS-4), reported health status and inactivity and the Medical Outcomes Study Short Form-12 (SF-12) QoL scores.
CKD (GFR <60 ml/min/1.73 m2) was present in 11.6% of the subjects. As GFR declined, the SF-12 physical component score, adjusted for other participant attributes, declined from 38.9 to 35.9 (p = 0.0001). After adjustment for other risk factors, poorer personal health scores (p < 0.0001) and decreased physical activity (p < 0.0001) were reported as GFR declined. In contrast, after adjusting for other participant characteristics, depression scores and stress scores and the mental component score of the SF-12 were not associated with kidney function.
Older individuals with CKD in the US population experience an increased prevalence of impaired QoL that cannot be fully explained by other individual characteristics.
PMCID: PMC2859227  PMID: 20164652
Functional status; Quality of life; Chronic kidney disease; End-stage renal disease; Glomerular filtration rate; REGARDS cohort study; Medical Outcomes Study Short Form-12
3.  Chronic Kidney Disease Is Often Unrecognized among Patients with Coronary Heart Disease: The REGARDS Cohort Study 
American Journal of Nephrology  2008;29(1):10-17.
Individuals with kidney disease are at increased risk for coronary heart disease (CHD) and CHD is associated with an increased prevalence of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Awareness of CKD may potentially influence diagnostic decisions, life-style changes and pharmacologic interventions targeted at modifiable CHD risk factors. We describe here the degree to which persons with CHD are aware of their CKD.
The Reasons for Geographical and Racial Difference in Stroke (REGARDS) cohort study, a population-based sample of US residents aged 45 and older. We included in our analyses 28,112 REGARDS participants recruited as of June 2007. We estimated GFR (eGFR) using the MDRD equation, defined CKD as a GFR <60 ml/min/1.73 m2, and ascertained awareness of chronic kidney disease and coronary heart disease through self-report. We used the odds ratio to compare the association between awareness of kidney disease, as measured by GFR <60 ml/min/1.73 m2, among individuals with and without self-reported CHD by both the presence of CKD and the severity of impaired kidney function.
Coronary heart disease was reported by 3,803 (14.1%) of subjects, and 11.3% of subjects had CKD by eGFR. Among all individuals with a GFR <60 ml/min/ 1.73 m2, 9.6% reported having been told by a physician that they had kidney disease. Among those with CHD and CKD, 5.0% were aware of their CKD compared to 2.0% in those without CHD [OR (95% CI) = 2.57 (2.08, 3.28)]. This difference persisted after controlling for the level of kidney function [aOR (95% CI) = 1.87 (1.43, 2.41)].
There was a high prevalence of CKD and a low prevalence of awareness of kidney disease among older adults in the US population with or without coronary heart disease. These findings support recent recommendations that patients with cardiovascular disease be systematically screened for and educated about CKD.
PMCID: PMC2786017  PMID: 18663284
Screening; Cardiovascular disease; Chronic kidney disease

Results 1-3 (3)