CKD is a problem of epidemic dimension. The risk of death and cardiovascular complications in this condition is of the same order of that by myocardial infarction, which qualifies CKD as “risk equivalent”. Calculations made on the basis of the epidemiological data of the MONICA-Augsburg study and analyses of the costs of myocardial infarction in a large health insurance company in Germany show that the economic burden of cardiovascular comorbidities with CKD in this country is substantial. These estimates, which may be valid also for other large member states of the European Community, represent a call for studies looking at the cost-effectiveness of preventive interventions aimed at reducing the risk for CKD and at lowering the concerning incidence rate of death and disability due to CKD-triggered cardiovascular complications in CKD patients.
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