Vision Impairment in CKD Patients: Epidemiology, Mechanisms, Differential Diagnoses, and Prevention.


Journal Article (Review)

Eyes and kidneys have numerous structural, developmental, physiologic, and pathogenic pathways in common, suggesting that many kidney and eye diseases may be interlinked. Studies suggest that the prevalence of eye diseases and vision impairment are higher among persons with end-stage kidney disease and earlier stages of chronic kidney disease (CKD) than in those without. Ocular morbidity in persons with CKD and end-stage kidney disease may be due to the following risk factors: (1) underlying conditions and risk factors for CKD such as diabetes or hypertension, (2) metabolic disorders associated with CKD, (3) uremia and anemia, and (4) CKD treatment. Among the chief eye diseases, diabetic retinopathy and age-related macular degeneration are most consistently associated with CKD. Further research for eye diseases such as glaucoma and cataract is needed to determine their relationships with CKD. Despite the high prevalence and burden of vision impairment among persons with CKD, eye screening in patients with CKD is not currently recommended as standard practice. This review suggests that patients with CKD should be encouraged to undergo a complete eye examination. Furthermore, physicians should be aware that patients undergoing dialysis may develop acute eye problems such as acute glaucoma, and appropriate referral to ophthalmologists should be considered in those with a history of glaucoma or recent ocular surgery. Interdisciplinary collaboration between nephrologists and ophthalmologists will ensure enhanced and appropriate management of patients with CKD.

Full Text

Cited Authors

  • Nusinovici, S; Sabanayagam, C; Teo, BW; Tan, GSW; Wong, TY

Published Date

  • June 2019

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 73 / 6

Start / End Page

  • 846 - 857

PubMed ID

  • 30929852

Pubmed Central ID

  • 30929852

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1523-6838

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0272-6386

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.1053/j.ajkd.2018.12.047


  • eng