Blacks who are HIV-positive are more likely than their white counterparts to have end-stage renal disease, or kidney failure, according to a study in the October issue of the Journal of the American Society of Nephrology, Reuters Health reports.
HIV is known to cause kidney disease, but few studies have quantified the risk of kidney failure associated with the infection, according to Reuters.
For the report, lead author Andy Choi of San Francisco General Hospital and colleagues examined a group of more than two million patients in the Department of Veterans Affairs health care system. They compared rates of kidney failure in patients with HIV with patients who had diabetes, another known cause of kidney disease.
Researchers found that about 15,000 of the participants had HIV -- a rate of 0.8% -- and that 54% of the HIV-positive patients were black. Choi said that the study "demonstrated a striking and unexpected degree of (kidney failure) among HIV-infected persons of black race," adding, "We can think of few other risk factors for (kidney failure) that are modified to this extent by race."
Researchers suggested that blacks and other high-risk individuals receive annual screenings for kidney disease. "This finding highlights the importance of efforts to improve the management of kidney disease among black patients with HIV infection," Choi said.
Source: Kaiser Family Foundation