A new study has pointed out that common tests of kidney function can predict the risk of mortality.
This analysis of 21 studies from 14 countries found that a common blood test to estimate kidney function and a urine test measuring protein (albumin) to estimate kidney damage were strongly related to mortality risk.
"People with high levels of albumin in their urine were at markedly higher risk of mortality than people with low levels of albumin in the urine," said Kunihiro Matsushita, lead author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow with the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health's Department of Epidemiology.
"The risk of mortality was elevated by nearly 50 percent at 30 mg/g albumin to creatinine ratio, which is the threshold for defining chronic kidney disease. In addition, mortality risk increased more than four-fold at high levels of albuminuria compared to an optimal level of 5 mg/g.
"The data presented in this analysis confirm that the current thresholds are indicative of increased all-cause and cardiovascular mortality risk with both kidney filtration function and urine protein contributing to risk," Matsushita added.
The results are published in the May 17, 2010 issue of the Lancet.