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Director’s Council of Public Representatives (COPR)

NIH Public Bulletin – March 2011

March Is National Kidney Month

When: March 2011
Where: Nationwide
Institute: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK)

March is National Kidney Month—a good time to find out what you can do to protect your kidneys and help family and friends protect theirs. Did you know that diabetes and high blood pressure are the leading causes of kidney disease? Other risk factors include cardiovascular (heart) disease and family history. If you have any of these risk factors, get checked for kidney disease. Because early kidney disease has no symptoms, the only way to know if you have it is to get your blood and urine checked.

Kidney disease can be effectively treated if detected early. It usually does not go away, and it may get worse over time. If the kidneys fail, dialysis and kidney transplant are the only options. The earlier kidney disease is found, the sooner you can take steps to keep your kidneys healthy longer. The steps you take to manage your diabetes and high blood pressure, like eating right, quitting smoking, and being active, also help protect your kidneys.

During March, learn more about how you can protect your kidneys, and talk to your family and community members about kidney health. Encourage those at risk to talk to their health care providers about getting checked for kidney disease. The National Kidney Disease Education Program has free tools that can help!

Next Steps

Find out how you can get involved during National Kidney Month at In addition, join NKDEP's Make the Kidney Connection Facebook page ( to get regular tips about kidney health. For more information on kidney disease, visit

This page last reviewed on September 6, 2012

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