Risks of rapid decline renal function in patients with type 2 diabetes

World J Diabetes. 2014 Dec 15;5(6):835-46. doi: 10.4239/wjd.v5.i6.835.


Progressive rising population of diabetes and related nephropathy, namely, diabetic kidney disease and associated end stage renal disease has become a major global public health issue. Results of observational studies indicate that most diabetic kidney disease progresses over decades; however, certain diabetes patients display a rapid decline in renal function, which may lead to renal failure within months. Although the definition of rapid renal function decline remained speculative, in general, it is defined by the decrease of estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) in absolute rate of loss or percent change. Based on the Kidney Disease: Improving Global Outcomes 2012 clinical practice guidelines, a rapid decline in renal function is defined as a sustained decline in eGFR of > 5 mL/min per 1.73 m(2) per year. It has been reported that potential factors contributing to a rapid decline in renal function include ethnic/genetic and demographic causes, smoking habits, increased glycated hemoglobin levels, obesity, albuminuria, anemia, low serum magnesium levels, high serum phosphate levels, vitamin D deficiency, elevated systolic blood pressure, pulse pressure, brachial-ankle pulse wave velocity values, retinopathy, and cardiac autonomic neuropathy. This article reviews current literatures in this area and provides insight on the early detection of diabetic subjects who are at risk of a rapid decline in renal function in order to develop a more aggressive approach to renal and cardiovascular protection.

Keywords: Albuminuria; Diabetic kidney disease; Estimated glomerular filtration rate; Rapid decline; Type 2 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Review