The Role of Acute Kidney Injury in Chronic Kidney Disease

Semin Nephrol. 2016 Jul;36(4):283-92. doi: 10.1016/j.semnephrol.2016.05.005.


There is increasing recognition that acute kidney injury (AKI) and chronic kidney disease (CKD) are closely linked and likely promote one another. Underlying CKD now is recognized as a clear risk factor for AKI because both decreased glomerular filtration rate and increased proteinuria have been shown to be associated strongly with AKI. A growing body of literature also provides evidence that AKI accelerates the progression of CKD. Individuals who suffered dialysis-requiring AKI are particularly vulnerable to worse long-term renal outcomes, including end-stage renal disease. The association between AKI and subsequent renal function decline is amplified by pre-existing severity of CKD, higher stage of AKI, and the cumulative number of AKI episodes. However, residual confounding and ascertainment bias may partly explain the epidemiologic association between AKI and CKD in observational studies. As the number of AKI survivors increases, we need to better understand other clinically important outcomes after AKI, identify those at highest risk for the most adverse sequelae, and develop strategies to optimize their care.

Keywords: Acute kidney injury; acute renal failure; chronic kidney disease; epidemiology; outcomes.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Acute Kidney Injury / epidemiology*
  • Disease Progression
  • Humans
  • Kidney Failure, Chronic / epidemiology*
  • Renal Insufficiency, Chronic / epidemiology*
  • Risk Factors