Risk of smoking
Cigarette smoking is the most important preventable cause of premature death in the United States. It accounts for more than 440,000 of the more than 2.4 million annual deaths. Cigarette smokers have a higher risk of developing several chronic disorders. These include fatty buildups in arteries, several types of cancer and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (lung problems). Atherosclerosis (buildup of fatty substances in the arteries) is a chief contributor to the high number of deaths from smoking. Many studies detail the evidence that cigarette smoking is a major cause of coronary heart disease, which leads to heart attack.

Cigarette and tobacco smoke, high blood cholesterol, high blood pressure, physical inactivity, obesity and diabetes are the six major independent risk factors for coronary heart disease that you can modify or control. Cigarette smoking is so widespread and significant as a risk factor that the Surgeon General has called it "the leading preventable cause of disease and deaths in the United States." Cigarette smoking increases the risk of coronary heart disease by itself. When it acts with other factors, it greatly increases risk. Smoking increases blood pressure, decreases exercise tolerance and increases the tendency for blood to clot. Smoking also increases the risk of recurrent coronary heart disease after bypass surgery. Cigarette smoking is the most important risk factor for young men and women. It produces a greater relative risk in persons under age 50 than in those over 50. Women who smoke and use oral contraceptives greatly increase their risk of coronary heart disease and stroke compared with nonsmoking women who use oral contraceptives. Smoking decreases HDL (good) cholesterol. Cigarette smoking combined with a family history of heart disease also seems to greatly increase the risk.

Kidney Disease and Diabetes

Stages of Kidney Disease

There are three stages of kidney disease.

1.Chronic renal insufficiency
Even in the first stage of kidney disease, the organ suffers damage. While there is impaired kidney function, during this stage there are only minimal effects to the entire body.
2.Chronic renal failure
In stage two of the disease, damage to the kidneys has progressed to a level that causes problems throughout the body. One such problem is an increase in the amount of waste products in the blood such as urea, creatinine and phosphate. When the body functions normally, the kidneys are able to remove these waste products. Other effects of chronic renal failure include anemia, bone disease, acidosis, and salt and fluid retention. Most patients with chronic renal failure progress to the third and final stage of kidney disease.
3.End-stage renal disease (ESRD)
By the time a patient reaches end-stage renal disease, the condition and its effects are generally irreversible. To sustain life, the patient requires renal replacement therapy, which includes dialysis or a kidney transplant.

Why does diabetes increase the risk for kidney disease?

In a non-diabetic person, the kidneys are able to synthesize or process proteins (albumin). But for individuals with diabetes, one of the condition's first effects on the kidneys is the release of small quantities of protein in the urine (microalbuminuria). Larger than normal amounts of protein are an early sign of kidney disease. Susceptible patients eventually develop persistent proteinuria, which increases their risk of developing progressive renal disease and can ultimately lead to death.

How are cardiovascular disease (CVD) and kidney disease related?

Chronic kidney disease can lead to cardiovascular disease (CVD). Conversely, CVD can lead to kidney disease, so the two diseases are strongly intertwined. According to studies, CVD begins to have an effect on the body as early as the first stage of kidney disease, and most people with ESRD die as a result of cardiovascular complications.

The conditions that are often associated with kidney disease also contribute to the development of cardiovascular disease.


  • High blood pressure (hypertension)
  • High LDL ("bad") cholesterol
  • Anemia
  • Disturbed mineral metabolism
  • High levels of homocysteine
  • Parathyroid hormone excess

    What should I do if I have diabetes?

    Many of the risk factors for kidney disease and CVD are treatable. If you have diabetes, take these steps:

  • Keep your blood sugar levels in the normal range.
  • Control your blood pressure.
  • Manage your weight.
  • Work closely with your health care team to ensure your albumin levels are being monitored.

    (The American Diabetes Association suggests that people with type 2 diabetes should be screened for albumin levels at the time of diagnosis and once a year thereafter.)

    Learn about other habits you can establish to get healthy. Visit our Cardiovascular Media Library to view animations and illustrations of conditions and healthy living related to kidney disease.
  • This free website was made using Yola.

    No HTML skills required. Build your website in minutes.

    Go to www.yola.com and sign up today!

    Make a free website with Yola