Chronic kidney disease (CKD), which is becoming increasingly prevalent in the US and worldwide, eventually progresses to end-stage renal disease (ESRD), requiring renal replacement therapy. Diabetes and hypertension, the two leading causes of CKD, are themselves reaching near epidemic proportions. Hypertension can cause both the development and progression of CKD, and CKD is a significant risk factor for the development of cardiovascular disease. Indeed, CKD patients are more likely to die of cardiovascular complications than progress to ESRD. However, data indicate that early recognition and management of CKD can have a significant positive impact on disease outcome. This creates an important interventional opportunity for the primary care physician. This report describes the major risk factors and comorbidities associated with the development and progression of CKD and offers suggestions for timely diagnosis and management of CKD in the primary care setting.