Stages of Chronic Kidney Disease

About chronic kidney disease (CKD)

Chronic kidney disease includes conditions that damage your kidneys and decrease their ability to keep you healthy by doing the jobs listed. These problems may happen slowly over a long period of time. Chronic kidney disease may be caused by diabetes, high blood pressure and other disorders.

When kidney disease progresses, it may eventually lead to kidney failure, which requires dialysis or a kidney transplant to maintain life.

Glomerular Filtration Rate (GFR)

GFR – glomerular filtration rate is the best test to measure your level of kidney function and determine your stage of kidney disease. Your doctor can calculate it from the results of your blood creatinine test, your age, body size and gender. Your GFR tells your doctor your stage of kidney disease and helps the doctor plan your treatment. If your GFR number is low, your kidneys are not working as well as they should. The earlier kidney disease is detected, the better the chance of slowing or stopping its progression.

Five stages of chronic kidney disease

To help improve the quality of care for people with kidney disease, the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) created a guideline to help doctors identify each level of kidney disease. The NKF divided kidney disease into five stages. When we know what stage of kidney disease a person has, we can provide the best care, as each stage calls for different tests and treatments.

Below shows the five stages of CKD and GFR for each stage.

Once you know the GFR you can determine a stage of kidney disease and read about that particular stage by clicking on a stage below:

  • Stage 1 with normal or high GFR (GFR > 90 mL/min)
  • Stage 2 Mild CKD (GFR = 60-89 mL/min)
  • Stage 3A Moderate CKD (GFR = 45-59 mL/min)
  • Stage 3B Moderate CKD (GFR = 30-44 mL/min)
  • Stage 4 Severe CKD (GFR = 15-29 mL/min)
  • Stage 5 End Stage CKD (GFR <15 mL/min)

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