Chronic Kidney Disease

Called a 'silent killer' because it often presents no symptoms in its earliest, most treatable phase, chronic kidney disease (CKD) affects more than 26 million adults in the United States and millions more are at risk.

Often caused by longstanding, uncontrolled diabetes or high blood pressure (hypertension) which interferes with the kidneys' ability to do their work and remove toxins from the blood, CKD, if left untreated, can eventually lead to kidney failure, necessitating dialysis and transplantation. Other causes of CKD include inflammation of the kidney (glomerulonephritis) and inherited kidney disorders. When CKD is detected and treated early, it can sometimes be kept from progressing. In the case of inherited disorders, like lupus and other causes of glomerulonephritis, CKD is often reversible.

Our Multidisciplinary, Patient-Focused Approach

Home to one of the largest, most comprehensive kidney disease treatment and research centers in the world, Mount Sinai offers complete evaluation and outstanding, state-of-the-art care for adults with all types and stages of CKD.

Our multidisciplinary approach brings together a team of CKD specialists, including highly ranked physicians (both general nephrologists and those who specialize in various aspects of CKD), nurse practitioners, social workers, and registered dietitians, to create a treatment plan individualized to each patient's needs. One of the hallmarks of our program is continuity of care. Patients are seen by the same doctors throughout the course of their care.

Because we are embedded within one of the nation's leading hospitals and a highly ranked medical school, we are able to draw on Mt. Sinai's vast resources, including specialists and researchers in cardiology, minimally invasive surgery, urology, medical genetics, radiology, and many other disciplines.

Our Chronic Kidney Disease Services

We work closely with both referring physicians and patients who come to us directly. For example, we are a primary referral center for patients with disorders related to renal dysfunction, including electrolyte disorders, such as hyponatremia (low sodium levels in the blood).

Our comprehensive services include clinical consultation and evaluation on all aspects of kidney (renal) disease. In patients with early stage CKD, we strive to prevent or delay the progression of CKD and its potentially serious complications, including among others heart and blood vessel disease, nerve damage, anemia, and broken bones. We work closely with patients to aggressively control CKD risk factors, such as diabetes and high blood pressure (hypertension), and to maximize healthy kidney function.

Our highly ranked nephrologists, who are leading experts in the field, also evaluate and treat patients with lupus and other familial nephrotic syndromes where CKD is often reversible.

We offer advanced renal imaging and, when appropriate, state-of-art kidney biopsyguided by ultrasound and computerized tomography for diagnostic purposes. We also evaluate biopsy findings. For patients whose disease has progressed to the point where dialysis may be appropriate, we offer robust dialysis services, including home dialysis options.

Mt. Sinai is one of New York City's leading transplant centers, and if kidney transplant is indicated, we work in close collaboration with the transplant team at the Recanati/Miller Transplantation Institute at Mount Sinai.

For elderly CKD patients, at whatever level of CKD need, we provide special geriatric services geared to the patient's level of frailty, multiple medications, memory and functional impairments, and psychological and family issues.

As people with human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) are living longer, chronic disorders, including kidney disorders, are becoming more prevalent among them. An international leader in researching the causes of renal failure in patients who are HIV positive, Mount Sinai provides comprehensive care for patients with HIV at Mount Sinai's Jack Martin Fund HIV Clinic, one of the largest clinics in New York City providing primary outpatient and inpatient treatment for adults and children with infectious diseases.

Bringing New Therapies to Light

The Division of Nephrology at Mount Sinai is a major research center for kidney disease and as such has one of the largest National Institutes of Health research budgets of any nephrology (kidney) division in the United States. In one ongoing study, Mount Sinai researchers are hard at work uncovering the mechanisms of proteinuria, one of the major components in kidney disease development, in the hope of developing novel new therapies for CKD. Mount Sinai researchers are also studying novel biological pathways or processes that influence a person's risk for diabetic nephropathy, the leading cause of CKD in the United States. Through this work, several exciting therapeutic targets have already been developed.

As part of their research program, Mount Sinai researchers are also conducting novel clinical trials.

Many Mount Sinai patients have the opportunity to participate in such clinical trials and to receive promising new therapies not otherwise available. Participation in clinical trials is completely voluntary.

To find currently open clinical trials for chronic kidney disease, please visit the Clinical Trials and Research Studies area of our Web site.

We Can Help

If you would like more information or would like to schedule an appointment, please call The Mount Sinai Health System at 212-241-2377.