E-Kidney Newsletter August 2008

August 2008
e-Kidney New letter August: New Law to help Kidney Community

New Legislation is Major Triumph for the Kidney Community

Kidney patients scored a victory on July 15 when Congress overrode a presidential veto and passed the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008, H.R. 6331. The bill contains a number of important kidney-related provisions, most notably coverage of pre-dialysis education for which the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) has been advocating for years.

"The philosophy behind the Pre-Dialysis Education provision is that an educated patient makes informed decisions and feels in control of his or her own health care, rather than feeling controlled by his or her medical situation," said Tracy Fortson, NKF Managing Director of Constituent Services. "The passage of this legislation will help ensure that patients fully understand their treatment choices and how best to manage their disease. Ultimately, we know this will improve lives while reducing costs of care."

To learn more about this legislation click here

Click here to join the NKF People Like Us Take Action Network.


Outstanding Athletes Named at the National Kidney Foundation 2008 U.S. Transplant Games

Paul Deboer of Grand Rapids, Michigan and Jennifer Searl of Peabody, Massachusetts were named the Outstanding Male and Female Athletes at the National Kidney Foundation 2008 U.S. Transplant Games held in Pittsburgh, July 11th to 16th.

The U.S. Transplant Games is an Olympic-style event for athletes who have received life-saving organ transplants of every type – kidney, liver, heart, lung, pancreas and bone marrow. This year, more than 1,300 transplant athletes competed for gold, silver and bronze medals in 12 different sports, including track and field, swimming, tennis, basketball, cycling and golf. Thousands of living donors, donor family members and other supporters accompanied these athletes at the Games. Presented biennially by the National Kidney Foundation since 1990, the U.S. Transplant Games draw participants from all over the country who are organized into 50 state teams.

For complete coverage of the NKF 2008 U.S. Transplant Games and hundreds of photos click here.

For more on the two outstanding athletes click here.


Living on Immunosuppressive Medication: New NKF Publication Helps Patients Cope

For most organ transplant recipients, immunosuppressant drugs are a fact of life. These medications help ensure that the body doesn't reject the transplanted organ and usually must be taken every day for the rest of a patient's life. Each person's body is unique and therefore every transplant recipient will have his or her individual drug regimen. No one can predict what side effects any one person will experience.

To help patients cope, the National Kidney Foundation has developed a new publication entitled "Transplantation: Living Well on Immunosuppressant Medicines." For a free copy call 1-800-622-9010.

To learn more about immunosuppressant drugs click here.


Patients Fuel NKF Researcher's Passion

Jeffrey Fadrowski, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Johns Hopkins University Medical Center, spends 80 percent of his time investigating the link between chronic kidney disease (CKD) in kids and their exposure to the heavy metals lead and cadmium. But, it's what he does with the remaining 20 percent of his professional time working with patients that fuels his passion for the rigors of research. "My patients," he says, "are my inspiration and motivation!"

To read more about this Young Investigator NKF Grant winner click here.


Kidney Disease Linked to Dementia

The chances of losing one's mental faculties with age are increased in older adults with chronic kidney disease, according to two research reports in the August issue of American Journal of Kidney Diseases, the official journal of the National Kidney Foundation.

The good news is that there are medications that decrease albuminuria or protein in the urine, one of the earliest signs of kidney disease, and therefore may prevent or delay cognitive decline.

To read more about this study click here.


A Garden-Fresh Recipe from the Kidney Kitchen

Summer is an ideal time to hit the beach, catch up with neighbors or take up a new sport. It's also a great time to reap the fruits (or veggies) of your labor. Use that garden you worked so hard on this spring or support your local farm stand, all the while keeping your kidneys in mind. The Kidney Kitchen has come up with a simple cucumber salad recipe that's fit for any summer occasion.

Click here for the recipe.