Big Waists Raise CKD Patients' Death Risk

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A large waist size increases the risk of death among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), data show.

In a study of 5,805 individuals aged 45 years and older and who had stage 1-4 CKD, men with a waist circumference of 122 cm or greater had a twofold increased risk of death compared with men who had a waist circumference less than 94 cm, after adjusting for covariates that included body mass index (BMI). Women with a waist size of 108 cm or greater were twice as likely to die than those with a waist circumference less than 80 cm, according to a report in the American Journal of Kidney Diseases (2011;58:177-185).

The study, led by Holly Kramer, MD, MPH, of Loyola University in Chicago, included patients enrolled in the Reasons for Geographic and Racial Differences in Stroke (REGARDS) study. During a median follow-up of four years, 686 subjects (11.8%) died. Compared with subjects who had a BMI of 25-29.9 kg/m2 (reference group), those with a BMI less than 25 had a 27% increased risk of death, whereas patients with a BMI of 30-34.9, 35-39.9, and 40 or higher had a 16%, 19%, and 5% decreased risk, respectively, after adjusting for covariates that included waist circumference.

“Waist circumference should be considered in conjunction with BMI when assessing mortality risk associated with obesity in adults with chronic kidney disease,” the authors concluded.

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