Information about the diagnosis and treatment of kidney disease has just been added to NIHSeniorHealth, the National Institutes of Health Web site designed especially for seniors. Consumers can visit http://nihseniorhealth.gov/kidneydisease/toc.html  to learn more about kidney disease, which affects a growing number of older adults and is most often caused by diabetes or high blood pressure. Kidney disease occurs when the kidneys can no longer remove wastes and extra water from the blood or perform other functions vital to maintaining health. If allowed to progress, it can lead to kidney failure and the need for dialysis or a kidney transplant.
"Recent studies show that an estimated 26 million people have kidney disease. But many are unaware they have it because most people have no symptoms before they are diagnosed," says Griffin P. Rodgers, M.D., director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), which developed the content for the new NIHSeniorHealth topic. "Early detection and appropriate treatment can slow the progression of kidney disease and help improve quality of life for those who are affected. The new kidney disease topic on NIHSeniorHealth is an excellent source of easy-to-understand information that will benefit older adults at risk."
One of the fastest growing age groups using the Internet, older Americans increasingly turn to the World Wide Web for health information. In fact, 68 percent of online seniors look for health and medical information when they go on the Web. NIHSeniorHealth is a joint effort of the National Institute on Aging (NIA) and the National Library of Medicine (NLM). The site is based on the latest research on cognition and aging. It features short, easy-to-read segments of information that can be accessed in a number of formats, including various large-print type sizes, open-captioned videos, and an audio version. Additional topics coming soon to the site include Parkinson's disease, leukemia, complementary and alternative medicine, and eating well as you get older.
The NIA leads the federal effort supporting and conducting research on aging and the health and well-being of older people.
The NLM, the world's largest library of the health sciences, creates and sponsors Web-based health information resources, including the consumer health information Web site MedlinePlus.
The NIDDK conducts and supports research in diabetes and other endocrine and metabolic diseases; digestive diseases, nutrition, and obesity; and kidney, urologic, and hematologic diseases.
The National Institutes of Health (NIH) -- The Nation's Medical Research Agency -- is comprised of 27 Institutes and Centers and is a component of the U. S. Department of Health and Human Services. It is the primary Federal agency for conducting and supporting basic, clinical, and translational medical research, and investigates the causes, treatments, and cures for both common and rare diseases. For more information about NIH and its programs, visit www.nih.gov .