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Community Link: National Kidney Month

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — Each week in Community Link, Carolene Mays and Marco Dominguez take a look at an organization or business that is making a positive impact on the community.

This week, Mays was joined by Dr. Bryant King, a nephrologist who specializes in treating ailments of the kidney, and Dr. Ann Osuntokun, a pediatrician with Ascension St. Vincent.

There are many diseases that can affect the kidneys, according to Dr. King.

“Some of them are autoimmune, such as lupus, cancers — particularly lymphoma and leukemias — and solid organ tumors, as well,” King said. “Some infections, such as hepatitis B and C and HIV, are associated with kidney disease, but the big to diseases that are mostly associated with kidney disease are diabetes and hypertension.”

Minorities are disproportionately affected by kidney disease, according to Dr. Osuntokun.

To help people better understand and know about kidney disease, Dr. Osuntokun and Dr. King are working on a project known as KARE, which stands for kidney awareness, resources and education.

KARE will be partnering in April with the National Kidney Foundation to hold in-person screenings for kidney disease and help catch the disease before it becomes advanced, according to Dr. Osuntokun.

“Our goal is to capture people with [kidney] disease,” Osuntokun said. “The best thing for everybody to do is to make sure that they have a primary care physician who has their interests [in mind] so that if they develop signs and symptoms of kidney disease, this will be picked up very early.”

To watch the entire segment, click on the video.