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Rise in kidney ailments in Jharkhand

Doctors in Jharkhand have linked high incidence of renal failure in the state with malaria falciparum, a particular strain of malaria prevalent in this part of the country, and have expressed concern over the lack of preparedness on the part of the government and private medical institutions in case of an epidemic.

While the premiere medical institution of state, Rajendra Institute of Medical Science (RIMS) in Ranchi has no super-speciality department for treating problems related to the kidney, there are only five qualified nephrologists in the state and most renal cases are dealt by general physicians in both government as well and private medical institutions.

Dr A K Mahato, head of department of medicine at RIMS, admitted that a large number of patients suffering from various renal disorders visit the hospital every day. "At present, the hospital has four dialysis machines and there is a long queue of patients. We are in the process of procuring and installing more machines. Some new machines will be installed shortly," he said.

When asked about the reason for increase in the number of kidney-related ailments in the state, Mahato said though diabetes and hypertension affect renal functions, the bulk of the new cases is directly linked with malaria and food adulteration. "Malarial infection involves the brain and the kidney. If left untreated, it often affects the kidney more," he said, adding that various dyes used in colouring vegetables and other food items also affects normal functioning of the kidney, leading to renal failure in some cases.

Dr Ghanashyam Singh, nephrologist at Apollo Hospital in Ranchi, said that since renal disorders do not have symptoms for early detection, most cases reach doctors when they are advanced stages. "Neither the government nor private medical institutions have any facility or awareness about detecting renal problems early. A renal profile is essential if a patient has been infected with malaria falciparum," he said.

Singh said that more than 30,000 dialysis procedures and 65 kidney transplants have been performed at their hospital over the past few years. When asked if early detection of renal infection can prevent kidney failure, Singh said medication helps prolong the life of infected kidney depending upon the stage in which the ailment is diagnosed. "If detected in the third stage, a patient can be advised medication that delays the need for dialysis," he said.

Narendra Sinha, doctor of medicine at Apollo, said chances of recovery of the kidney in case of being affected by malarial infection are higher if properly diagnosed. "In case of malaria, early and proper treatment can avert chances of renal issues. Unfortunately, most malarial cases in Jharkhand are ignored set aside follow up diagnosis of kidney and its condition," he said. source-articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com

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