By Oluwafunke Ishola
Dr Ebun Bamgboye, a Consultant Physician and Transplant Nephrologist, says the prevalence of end-stage renal disease (ESRD) in Nigeria is estimated at 20, 000 new cases yearly.
Bamgboye, also a Clinical Director at St. Nicholas Hospital, Lagos, made this known at a virtual webinar in commemoration of the World Kidney Day in Lagos.
The webinar was organised by the Medical, Pharmaceutical and Allied Group of the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI).
Theme of the event was: “Kidney Diseases: Common Causes, Early Symptoms and Treatment.”
Bamgboye said kidney disease was a global health problem that affects 850 million people worldwide.
He said that the end-stage renal disease (ESRD) was the final, permanent stage of chronic kidney disease, where kidney function had declined to the point that it could no longer function on their own.
Bamgboye said that in such a situation, a dialysis that comes in two forms: hemodialysis or peritoneal dialysis would be required to assist the patient remove wastes and extra fluid from their blood.
“Roughly, there are about 100 new cases per million population yearly in Nigeria; with our population at 200 million, we expect that there will be 20,000 people requiring care, dialysis or transplant yearly.
“If you add that to our pre-existing patients, we should have close to 100, 000 people on dialysis,” the expert said.
He said that the total patients with ESRD on management at all the dialysis units in the country were less than two thousands.
According to him, estimated expected expenditure on dialysis yearly is N316 billion.
“Currently, there are 188 dialysis units all over Nigeria (102 public, 88 private), with over 180 trained and actively practicing nephrologists in the country,” he said.
Bamgboye said that the financial burden of renal therapies was huge, with three sessions of dialysis costing N75,000 weekly per person, which amounts to about N4 million annually.
According to him, a kidney transplant cost about N7 million to N10 million; medication for post transplant care cost about N150, 000 per month for life, amounting to N1.8 million annually.
He added that there were additional costs for follow up and tests.
The nephrologist noted that renal transplant compared to dialysis confers the best possible quality of life and reduces mortality risk in ESRD patients.
Bamgboye disclosed that 770 renal transplants had been done thus far in the country, adding that all were live donors.
“Our experience at St. Nicholas is that we see about 150 patients yearly, that’s about 10 to 15 patients per month, and we do over five thousands dialysis yearly.
“We tend to have a younger population of people that require kidney care than in the western and developed countries,” he said.
Bamgboye said that to reverse the trend, the country must accept that the provision of Universal Health Care was a fundamental human right which must be respected and implemented.
He said the country must ensure that it develops capacity to deal with full range of care; noting that services should be available for all at affordable cost and at urban and rural locations.
Bamgboye said that screening and early diagnosis were critical to reduce prevalence and outcomes of treatment.
Also, Prof. Oluwatoyin Amira, Consultant Physician and Nephrologist, Lagos University Teaching Hospital (LUTH), said that the prevalence of chronic kidney disease was about 11 to 20 per cent in Nigeria.
Amira said that at least 22 to 36 million Nigerians suffer from various degrees of kidney disease.
“In LUTH, on average, we get about 40 to 50 new cases of chronic kidney disease per month from the emergency units and clinics.
“In Nigeria, it affects people in the economically productive age group of 30 to 50 years,” she said.
Amira said mortality was high due to high cost of treatment and late presentation, adding that 10 of their patients on dialysis were alive by one year.
She said hypertension and diabetes mellitus account for about 70 per cent of the disease worldwide, stressing that it was cheaper to prevent it than to treat it.
Commenting, Mrs Toki Mabogunje, President, LCCI, said that the increasing number of Nigerians with kidney disease and a large proportion being unaware at early stage of disease makes its management difficult.
Mabogunje, represented by Mr Gabriel Idahosa, Vice-President of LCCI, called for increased awareness and orientation on kidney disease to curb the progression of the disease into advance stage.
She also called for the strengthening of the country’s healthcare system to ensure effective management of the disease and improve access to healthcare for those living with the disease.
Mabogunje said that the coverage of the National Health Insurance Scheme should be improved to cover cost of kidney treatment so as to lessen the financial burden on the patients.
Commenting, Dr Niyi Osamiluyi, Chairman, Medical, Pharmaceutical and Allied Group, LCCI, said that issues of kidney disease and its management were critical to health sector development, considering its high prevalence in the country. (NAN)