"The medications for hypertension and diabetes do not damage the kidneys. What damages the kidneys is the disease itself. It is not the drugs," Lydia stated during a virtual media briefing themed "Commemoration of World Kidney Day 2021" here on Wednesday.
The association’s chairman cautioned that the continuous intake of painkillers without the doctor's recommendation could increase the risk of kidney problems.
Hence, Lydia has advised people with hypertension and diabetes, which are the most common causes of kidney failure, to keep the disease in check to prevent complications arising in other organs, including the kidneys.
In addition to a healthy lifestyle coupled with proper dietary intake and physical activity, medication and timely blood checkups are crucial in treating both diseases.
"Diabetes and hypertension must be kept in control, for which one can start by adopting a healthy lifestyle and diet according to the doctor's recommendation. If that is not sufficient, the patients can take medications. Medications for diabetes and hypertension recommended (by doctors) are safe. Today, there are many good options in terms of the available drugs," Lydia stated.
The doctor dismissed the prevalent public perception that the symptoms of blood pressure or blood sugar are apparent, so checkups were not necessary, as the patients would become aware once their blood pressure or blood sugar levels spiked.
Meanwhile, speaking in connection with kidney failure, Lydia revealed that in the early stages, the disease was generally asymptomatic. Hence, patients visiting the doctor were generally those whose condition was severe and when their kidney functioning had dropped significantly and had begun experiencing acute complications. In such situations, the available treatment options were limited.
Hence, Lydia stressed on the significance of disseminating information on kidney disease, complications, management, and treatment options for people with chronic kidney disease before the ailment reached its final stage. Patients and their families must be involved in every decision made on the patient's health condition by prioritizing the role, values, priorities, and goals of the patient.
Global epidemiological data indicated that one in 10 people in the world suffered from chronic kidney disease, while nine out of 10 people were unaware of having kidney problems.
Based on the Basic Health Research (Riskesdas) in 2013, the prevalence of chronic kidney disease in Indonesia was two per 1000 population and had climbed to 3.8 per 1000 population in 2018, or nearly doubled.
In the meantime, PERNEFRI screening in 2006 involving 12 thousand people found the prevalence of chronic kidney disease to have reached 12.5 percent.
Related news: Indonesia intensifies COVID-19 contact tracing to lower fatality rate
Related news: Micro-scale PPKM effectively works to stem COVID-19 spread: KPC-PEN
EDITED BY INE