Air pollution is causing chronic kidney disease in over 10 million people around the world, a study has found. Benjamin Bowe from the Clinical Epidemiology Center at the VA Saint Louis Health Care System in the US previously described an association between increased levels of fine particulate matter and risk of developing chronic kidney disease (CKD). Scientists used the Global Burden of Disease study methodologies to estimate the burden of CKD attributable to air pollution. The estimated global burden of incident CKD attributable to fine particulate matter was more than 10.7 million cases per year, researchers said. Epidemiologic measures of the burden of CKD attributable to air pollution including years living with disability, years of life lost, and disability-adjusted life years suggest that the burden varies greatly by geography, with higher values seen in Central America and South Asia. "Air pollution might at least partially explain the rise in incidence of CKD of unknown origin in many geographies around the world, and the rise in Mesoamerican nephropathy in Mexico and Central America," said Bowe.
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