The just released (August 2012) U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) report on chronic kidney disease (CKD) screening concluded that we know surprisingly little about whether screening adults with no signs or symptoms of CKD will improve health outcomes and that clinicians and patients deserve better information on CKD. The implications of the recently introduced CKD staging paradigm versus long-term renal outcomes remain uncertain. Furthermore, the natural history of CKD remains unclear. We completed a comparison of US population-wide CKD to projected annual incidence of end stage renal disease (ESRD) for 2008 based on current evidence in the literature . Projections for new ESRD resulted in an estimated 840,000 new ESRD cases in 2008, whereas the actual reported new ESRD incidence in 2008, according to the 2010 USRDS Annual Data Report, was in fact only 112,476, a gross overestimation by about 650%. We conclude that we as nephrologists in particular, and physicians in general, still do not understand the true natural history of CKD. We further discussed the limitations of current National Kidney Foundation Disease Outcomes Quality Initiative (NKF KDOQI) CKD staging paradigms. Moreover, we have raised questions regarding the CKD patients who need to be seen by nephrologists, and have further highlighted the limitations and intricacies of the individual patient prognostication among CKD populations when followed overtime, and the implications of these in relation to future planning of CKD care in general. Finally, the clear heterogeneity of the so-called CKD patient is brought into prominence as we review the very misleading concept of classifying and prognosticating all CKD patients as one homogenous patient population.
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