Acute kidney injury (AKI) is defined by a rapid increase in serum creatinine, decrease in urine output, or both. AKI occurs in approximately 10-15% of patients admitted to hospital, while its incidence in intensive care has been reported in more than 50% of patients. Kidney dysfunction or damage can occur over a longer period or follow AKI in a continuum with acute and chronic kidney disease. Biomarkers of kidney injury or stress are new tools for risk assessment and could possibly guide therapy. AKI is not a single disease but rather a loose collection of syndromes as diverse as sepsis, cardiorenal syndrome, and urinary tract obstruction. The approach to a patient with AKI depends on the clinical context and can also vary by resource availability. Although the effectiveness of several widely applied treatments is still controversial, evidence for several interventions, especially when used together, has increased over the past decade.
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