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4.9 per cent Indian kids, adolescents suffer from impaired kidney function: Study

New Delhi, July 4: About 4.9 per cent of children and adolescents in India suffer from impaired kidney function, according to the first nationwide survey released on Thursday.

Impaired kidney function causes kidney damage to worsen over several months or years — chronic kidney disease (CKD). It is a significant public health problem, and its burden in children and adolescents in India is not well described. The new study by researchers from All India Institute of Medical Sciences – Bathinda and Vijaypur, and The George Institute for Global Health India, is based on the Comprehensive National Nutrition Survey (CNNS) of 24,690 children and adolescents aged 5-19 years between 2016 and 18.

The results showed 4.9 per cent of children and adolescents, which amounts to around 49,000 cases per million population suffer from impaired kidney function. The “key predictors include age, rural residence, lower maternal education, and stunting. Addressing these factors is crucial for improving child health outcomes”, said Prof. Vivekanand Jha, Executive Director, The George Institute for Global Health, India, in a post on X. The prevalence of impaired kidney function was found more in males and rural areas. Further, Andhra Pradesh, followed by Telangana and West Bengal showed the highest cases, while the prevalence was lowest in Tamil Nadu, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan, and Kerala.

“The high prevalence of impaired kidney function among Indian children and adolescents underscores the urgent need for targeted interventions and policies to address this growing public health issue. Time to prioritise pediatric kidney health in national health,” Vivekanand Jha said.

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