June 24, 2024

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Technology to help reduce kidney disease is already in our hands

For decades, Texas has struggled to control a silent killer among its residents: chronic kidney disease (CKD).

Gov. Greg Abbott recently appointed Dr. Francis Wright from San Antonio as chair of Texas’ Chronic Kidney Disease Task Force, a task force revitalized in 2019 and created in 2009 to address the state’s high CKD rates. The new assignment, Dr. Wright conceded, will be a challenge.

Patient on dialysis

Here is the good news: new technology can dramatically increase early detection rates, helping curb this hidden pandemic – reducing health care costs and saving lives in the process. All it takes is a smartphone camera and an app.

The camera technology in smartphones has advanced so much in recent years that you can use it to perform a urine test at home to determine early warning signs of kidney disease. The test, known as an ACR test, measures the amount of a type of protein called albumin in your urine to determine the albumin-to-creatinine ratio.

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