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Asian Americans & chronic kidney disease in a nationally representative cohort.



There is a paucity of specific data on early stages of chronic kidney disease (CKD) among Asian Americans (AAs). The objective of this study was to examine the independent association of Asian race/ethnicity and socio-demographic and co-morbidity factors with markers of early kidney damage, ascertained by ACR levels, as well as kidney dysfunction, ascertained by eGFR levels in a large cross-sectional sample of AAs enrolled in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES).


Secondary data analyses of the NHANES 2011-2014 data of a nationally representative sample of 5907 participants 18 years and older, US citizens, and of Asian and White race. NHANES data included race (Asian vs. White), as well as other socio-demographic information and comorbidities. Urine albumin-to-creatinine ratio (ACR) categories and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) were used as indicators for CKD. Descriptive analyses using frequencies, means (standard deviations), and chi-square tests was first conducted, then multivariable logistic regression serial adjustment models were used to examine the associations between race/ethnicity, other socio-demographic factors (age, sex, education), and co-morbidities (obesity, diabetes, hypertension) with elevated ACR levels (A2 & A3 - CKD Stages 3 and 4-5, respectively) as well as reduced eGFR (G3a-G5 and G3b -G5 - CKD Stage 3-5).


AAs were more likely than White participants to have ACR levels > 300 mg/g (A3) (adjusted OR (aOR) (95% CI) 2.77 (1.55, 4.97), p = 0.001). In contrast, adjusted analyses demonstrated that AAs were less likely to have eGFR levels < 60 ml/min/1.73 m2 (G3a-G5) (aOR (95% CI) 0.50 (0.35, 0.72), p < .001).


This is one of the first large U.S. population-based studies of AAs that has shown a comparatively higher risk of elevated ACR > 300 mg/g levels (A3) but lower risk of having eGFR levels < 60 ml/min/1.732 m2 (G3a-G5). The findings support the need to address the gaps in knowledge regarding disparities in risk of early stage CKD among AAs.

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