Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is a life-long condition associated with substantial morbidity and premature death due to complications from a progressive decrease in kidney function. The incidence and prevalence of all stages of CKD in children continues to increase worldwide. Between 2000 and 2008, the kidney replacement therapy incidence rate in those aged 0-19 years increased 5.9% to 15 per million population, highlighting the importance of CKD research in children. Many comorbid conditions seen in adults with CKD, including cardiovascular disease and cognitive impairment, also are highly prevalent in children, implicitly demonstrating the crucial need for initiating therapy early to improve health outcomes in children with CKD. The CKiD (Chronic Kidney Disease in Children) Study is a prospective cohort study of 586 children aged 1-16 years with an estimated glomerular filtration rate of 30-90 mL/min/1.73 m(2). Since its inception, CKiD has identified risk factors for CKD progression and cardiovascular disease in children with CKD and highlighted the effects of CKD on outcomes unique to children, including neurocognitive development and growth. This review summarizes the findings to date, illustrating the spectrum of CKD-associated complications in children and emphasizing areas requiring further investigation. Taken in sum, these elements stress that initiating treatment at an early age is essential for reducing long-term morbidity and mortality in children with CKD.
Copyright © 2012 National Kidney Foundation, Inc. All rights reserved.