Exploring the differences in epidemiology of treated ESRD between Germany and England and Wales

Am J Kidney Dis. 2006 Mar;47(3):445-54. doi: 10.1053/j.ajkd.2005.12.026.


Background: The aim of this study is to investigate reasons for the large reported differences in renal replacement therapy (RRT) incidence between Germany and England and Wales (E&W).

Methods: Age- and sex-standardized incidence rates were calculated at day 0, day 90, and day 180 by using registry data, and early RRT mortality was studied as an indicator of ascertainment differences. Nationally representative health survey data were analyzed to provide general population prevalence data for major chronic kidney disease risk factors: hypertension, diabetes, vascular disease, obesity, and smoking. Resource data were collected from routine sources and national surveys, and literature searches were performed to explore variation in chronic kidney disease prevalence, late referral, early start, and nondialytic therapy.

Results: The gap in RRT incidence between Germany and E&W increased after adjusting for differences in early mortality. The standardized day-90 incidence rate ratio was 1.79 (193.0 per million of the adult population [pmap] in Germany and 107.5 pmap in E&W) diabetes and vascular disease explained 79% of this difference. Diabetes, ischemic heart disease, and hypertension were 1.85-, 1.24-, and 1.18-fold more prevalent in Germany, whereas rates of hypertension control were 0.54-fold lower (20% versus 37% in England). Ischemic heart disease mortality rates were lower in Germany.

Conclusion: Much of the difference in RRT incidence between Germany and E&W is explained by a greater prevalence of diabetes, hypertension, and vascular disease in the German general population, particularly those older than 65 years, and lower competing mortality risk.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • England / epidemiology
  • Female
  • Germany / epidemiology
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / epidemiology*
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / therapy
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Registries
  • Renal Replacement Therapy
  • Wales / epidemiology