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What is your `kidney number?'

Staff Reporter

It is an important tool to determine kidney function


  • Kidney number is calculated based on the creatanin level, age and sex of the person
  • On an average, a kidney number in the range of 80 to 129 is good

    Bangalore: You probably know your blood pressure level and blood sugar levels, but do you know your "kidney number?"

    The kidney number is a calculation made on the basis of the creatanin in a person's system and is very effective in analysing the percentage of kidney function. All that you need to find out your creatanin level is a simple blood test.

    H. Sudarshan Ballal, Director of Manipal Hospital's nephrology department, says the kidney number is an important tool to determine kidney function and prevent loss of function. "If a person also finds out his creatanin level during his yearly health check-up, we can detect any damage to the kidney early on, and in some cases can help prevent the person from losing higher percentage of his/her kidney function."

    He says that most patients who come to him with kidney problems come at a very late stage. "Most come when 90 per cent of their kidneys have failed and they have no choice to be put on dialysis or go in for a kidney transplant," he adds.

    The kidney number is calculated based on the creatanin level, the age and sex of the person. Dr. Ballal says on an average a kidney number in the range of 80 to 129 is good whereas a kidney function below 80 is bad.

    The kidney number varies for men and women and is also dependant on the muscle mass of the person. Petite persons with low muscle mass can have a lower kidney number. "For small persons, as Indians usually are, a kidney number of 70 is also good," Dr. Ballal says.

    H. Mani, a nephrologist, says that it is important for individuals to know their kidney number as it will reduce the number of persons having to go through dialysis, which is an expensive and sometimes painful process. Each dialysis in India on an average costs Rs. 1,700.

    Dr. Ballal says that he recommends a creatanin test for all patients who come to him for check-up. Manipal Hospital has also told the laboratory technicians to do it as part of the routine tests.

    "It is not a difficult test. Individuals can do it at the same time that they go in for their blood sugar testing. All that the lab technician needs to do is to draw out a sample of blood with creatanin."

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