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Weight Loss Associated With Benefits in Kidney Disease

Last Updated: September 18, 2009.

Weight loss in patients with chronic kidney disease and glomerular hyperfiltration -- either through surgical or non-surgical approaches -- may be associated with improvements in proteinuria and normalization of glomerular filtration rate, according to research published online Sept. 17 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

FRIDAY, Sept. 18 (HealthDay News) -- Weight loss in patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) and glomerular hyperfiltration -- either through surgical or non-surgical approaches -- may be associated with improvements in proteinuria and normalization of glomerular filtration rate, according to research published online Sept. 17 in the Clinical Journal of the American Society of Nephrology.

Sankar D. Navaneethan, M.D., of the Cleveland Clinic, and colleagues conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis of 13 studies; six of these assessed weight loss through non-surgical approaches, such as diet and exercise, in patients with CKD, and seven assessed the effects of weight loss surgery on glomerular filtration rate in morbidly obese patients with glomerular hyperfiltration.

With the non-surgical interventions, the researchers found that patients had a significant decrease in body mass index, which was associated with a significant decrease in proteinuria and systolic blood pressure, but without change in glomerular filtration rate during follow-up. The surgical interventions were associated with a decrease in body mass index, along with a decrease in albuminuria and systolic blood pressure and normalization of glomerular hyperfiltration.

"It seems that weight loss may offer renal benefits in addition to the cardiovascular benefits, thereby reducing both the cardiovascular and the CKD risks in these patients; however, the evidence supporting the role of intentional weight loss in patients with mild to moderate CKD to slow the progression of kidney disease is modest at best, and more research is needed in this area," the authors conclude.

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