News Release

Rising rates of kidney injury in women who are hospitalized during pregnancy

Peer-Reviewed Publication

American Society of Nephrology

Washington, DC (November 9, 2019) -- A recent analysis reveals increasing rates of acute kidney injury in women who are hospitalized during pregnancy, especially among those with diabetes. Also, women with pregnancy-related acute kidney injury were much more likely to die while in the hospital than those without kidney injury. The findings will be presented at ASN Kidney Week 2019 November 5-November 10 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.

Kidney injury during pregnancy is associated with significant maternal and fetal morbidity and mortality. To study the issue, Silvi Shah, MD (University of Cincinnati) and her colleagues analyzed records from the 2006-2015 Nationwide Inpatient Sample, a US database containing information on more than 7 million hospital stays each year.

The researchers identified 42,190,790 hospitalizations during pregnancy, and the overall rate of hospitalizations involving acute kidney injury was 0.08%. The rate increased from 0.04% in 2006 to 0.12% in 2015. Women with pregnancy-related acute kidney injury were older than those who did not develop acute kidney injury. Pregnancy-related acute kidney injury occurred at a higher rate in black women than white women, and in women with diabetes than in those without diabetes. The rate of pregnancy-related hospitalization involving acute kidney injury in diabetic women increased from 0.36% in 2006 to 1.10% in 2015.

Higher rates were observed in southern and midwest geographical regions than in the northeast region, and in urban teaching hospitals than in urban non-teaching hospitals and rural hospitals.

Women with pregnancy-related acute kidney injury were much more likely to die while in the hospital than those without kidney injury (3.98% vs. 0.01%).

"The findings of our study may necessitate change in nationwide policies regarding obstetric care of women and emphasize the need for kidney health monitoring for women hospitalized during pregnancy and during their outpatient prenatal visits," said Dr. Shah.


Study: "Pregnancy-Related Acute Kidney Injury and Diabetes: Hospitalizations and Clinical Outcomes"

ASN Kidney Week 2019, the largest nephrology meeting of its kind, will provide a forum for more than 13,000 professionals to discuss the latest findings in kidney health research and engage in educational sessions related to advances in the care of patients with kidney and related disorders. Kidney Week 2019 will take place November 5 - November 10 in Washington, DC.

Since 1966, ASN has been leading the fight to prevent, treat, and cure kidney diseases throughout the world by educating health professionals and scientists, advancing research and innovation, communicating new knowledge, and advocating for the highest quality care for patients. ASN has more than 20,000 members representing 131 countries. For more information, please visit or contact the society at 202-640-4660.

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