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MUSC Health Blog

Keyword: transplant

In honor of Kidney Health Month, MUSC Health and the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) are working together to increase kidney health awareness throughout South Carolina. With the increase in diabetes and high blood pressure – two major kidney disease risk factors – kidney disease is on the rise. South Carolina ranks among the highest for those being treated for kidney failure and awaiting lifesaving transplants.

Quick Kidney Facts:

  • One in three American adults is at high risk for developing kidney disease today.
  • 26 million Americans have kidney disease –– and most don't know it.
  • High blood pressure and diabetes are the two leading causes of kidney disease.
  • Kidney disease is the ninth leading cause of death in the United States.

Kidney Health Awareness Event Calendar:

World Kidney Day – Thursday, March 9, 2017

  • Wear orange to show your support of Kidney Health Awareness!
  • The NKF will be hosting an information table and kidney screenings at the S.C. Statehouse

Kidney Walks

More than 100 Kidney Walks take place across the U.S. each year, at­tracting over 125,000 walkers, 6,000 teams and raising over eight million dollars to sup­port NKF's early detection, awareness, and education programs. MUSC is supporting all South Carolina walks and encourages participation from our patients, staff and surrounding communities. More than 80 cents of every dollar donated directly supports NKF programs and services.

Charleston Kidney Walk
Sunday, March 12, 2017
More information about the Charleston Kidney Walk

Columbia Kidney Walk
Sunday, March 26, 2017
More information about the Columbia Kidney Walk

Greenville Kidney Walk
Sunday, April 22, 2017
More information about the Greenville Kidney Walk

6 Steps to Healthier Kidneys

Step 1 - Know the Facts:

6 things healthy kidneys do: 

  • Regulate the body’s fluid level
  • Filter wastes and toxins from the blood
  • Release a hormone that regulates blood pressure
  • Activate Vitamin D to maintain healthy bones
  • Release the hormone that directs production of RBC
  • Keep blood minerals in balance (Na, Phos, K)

8 Problems Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) can cause:

  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Heart attack and stroke
  • High blood pressure
  • Weak bones
  • Nerve damage (neuropathy)
  • Kidney failure (ESRD)
  • Anemia
  • Death

Step 2 - Assess your Risk: 

  • 4 Main Risk Factors:  Diabetes, High Blood Pressure, Cardiovascular Disease, Family History of Kidney Disease/Diabetes/High Blood Pressure
  • 10 Additional Risk Factors: African American Heritage, Native American Heritage, Hispanic, Asian or Pacific Islander Heritage, Age >60, Obesity, Low Birth Weight, Prolonged use of NSAIDs, Lupus and Other Autoimmune Disorders, Chronic UTIs, Kidney Stones

Step 3 - Possible Trouble Signs:

Most people with early CKD have no symptoms, which is why early testing is critical. By the time symptoms appear, CKD may be advanced, and symptoms can be misleading. Pay attention to these:  fatigue/weakness, difficult/painful urination, foamy urine, pink or dark urine, increased need to urinate, puffy eyes, swollen face/hands/abdomen/ankles/feet, increased thirst.

Step 4 - Get Tested:

4 Simple Tests: Blood Pressure, Protein in the Urine, Creatinine in Blood, Glomerular Filtration Rate

Step 5 - Stay Healthy:

6 Things People with CKD should do: 

  • Lower high blood pressure
  • Keep blood sugar levels under control, if diabetic
  • Reduce salt intake
  • Avoid NSAIDs (painkillers such as ibuprofen and naproxen)
  • Moderate protein consumption
  • Get an annual flu shot

9 Things Everyone should do:

  • Exercise regularly
  • Control weight
  • Follow a balanced diet
  • Quit smoking
  • Drink only in moderation
  • Stay hydrated
  • Monitor cholesterol levels
  • Get an annual physical
  • Know your family medical history

Step 6 - Learn More:

  • Do you need a kidney health check? KEEP HEALTHY- NKF offers free kidney health checks in communities across the country.  A screening will be offered in Charleston on Sat, March 20th from 9am-1pm at Mt. Moria Baptist Church in North Charleston.
  • To learn more about CKD risk factors, prevention and treatment, visit

Did you know that 1 in 3 Americans are at risk for kidney disease? MUSC Health and the National Kidney Foundation are working together to increase kidney health awareness throughout South Carolina.

Kidney Health Awareness Event Calendar

National Kidney Health Awareness Month Kick-off Event

Wednesday, March 4, 2015
MUSC Horseshoe, 12:00 noon
Guest speakers and a special surprise!

Columbia Kidney Walk

Sunday, March 15, 2015
More information

KEEP Healthy Event

Saturday, March 21, 2015
Mt. Moriah Baptist Church, North Charleston

Charleston Kidney Walk

Sunday, March 22, 2015
More information

Upstate Kidney Walk

Sunday, April 26, 2015
More information

Today Dakota Seabrook seems like your average teen-age high school student - playing video games, shooting hoops and acquiring an impressive collection of athletic shoes.  But Dakota's path to this role is anything but average. For most of his life, Dakota has suffered from the debilitating pain crises associated with Sickle Cell Disease (SCD).  In 2012 though, he participated in a clinical trial at MUSC for treatment of SCD that has changed his life.  This treatment consists of bone marrow transplant from unrelated donors and it has the potential to actually cure SCD.  Watch Dakota's inspiring story in this video. Dakota Seabrook  A Second Chance


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