A new study appearing in an upcoming issue of Journal of the American Society of Nephrology (JASN) suggests that a CKD patient's immune response may provide better and more rapid insights into the cause, severity, and prognosis of certain bacterial infections than conventional tests. When harmful bacteria or viruses enter the body through unclean surfaces, the air a person breathes, or the mouth it can cause inflammation, energy loss, tiredness, fever, treatment failure and even death if not detected early.
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Those with Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) have an increased risk of infection because of related conditions such as diabetes, poor appetite (inadequate calorie and protein intake), weakened immune system, and their access site (Arteriovenous Fistula, Peritoneal Dialysis or chest catheter) can be vulnerable to infection. In many cases late stage CKD patients decide against the generally perceived less burdensome home based Peritoneal Dialysis for the sole reason of infections. Unfortunately, current tests for infections use microbiological culture methods which are slow and inefficient in slowing or preventing viruses.
This new "immune fingerprint" strategy could lead to more accurate diagnoses and earlier appropriate antibiotic treatment said researchers. The team found that certain immune markers correlated with test results and robustly predicted the presence of infection. What's more is that particular combinations of biomarkers can also preemptively determine elevated risk for infection and treatment failure in people with CKD.
These new findings may potentially improve the early diagnosis and treatment of infection in CKD patients such as peritonitis in those on Peritoneal Dialysis and other local and systemic disorders. The goal is to develop a simple test that can be used by Nephrologists and at home by patients. To avoid infections in the first place KidneyBuzz.com recommends that you wash your hands regularly, eat well according to your specific renal diet, keep your access site clean and monitor it frequently, and report any signs of infection to your Nephrologist immediately.
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American Society of Nephrology. "Patients' 'immune Fingerprints' May Help Diagnose Bacterial Infections and Guide Treatment." Medicalxpress.com. Journal of the American Society of Nephrology