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Sensing Savvy

Susan Eymann, MS

Susan Eymann is a medical writer with over 20 years of experience covering topics related to intraoperative blood flow measurement. She is also the author of the handbook, Flow-based Intraoperative Coronary Artery Bypass Patency Assurance, which has been widely recognized as one of the most valuable publications on graft patency currently in circulation. Susan holds a Master's of Science degree in Biology from Penn State University.

Recent Posts

Transplantation in ESRD Patients

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Nov 13, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume II: Chapter 6)

Kidney transplantation is the renal replacement therapy (RRP) of choice for the majority of patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD). Successful kidney transplantation is associated with improved survival, improved quality of life, and healthcare cost savings when compared to dialysis. In 2014, the Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network conducted major revisions of the kidney allocation system in order to reduce discards of potentially usable donor kidneys, decrease access disparities, and decrease unrealized life-years from the available organ supply. Changes included the following:

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Prevalence of End-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD) Across the Globe Part 1

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Oct 30, 2019

(Gleaned from 2018 USRDA Data Volume 2: ESRD in the United States)

Prevalence is the ratio of the total number of patients diagnosed and getting treatment of a disease to the total population. It tells how widespread a disease is in a population.
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Cardiovascular Disease in Patients with CKD – 2018

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Oct 23, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume 1, Chapter 4: www.usrds.org)

Cardiovascular disease (CVD) remains the leading cause of death in the United States and most other developed countries. It accounts for approximately 39 percent of deaths among those on dialysis. Among patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD), death from CVD is far more common than progression to end-stage renal disease (ESRD). CKD has been identified as an independent risk factor for CVD, and arguably should be recognized as a coronary disease risk equivalent, similar to diabetes mellitus (DM). The complex relationship between CVD and kidney disease is thought to be due to shared traditional risk factors, such as DM, hypertension (HTN), physical inactivity, left ventricular hypertrophy, smoking, family history and abnormal lipid levels in the blood.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

United States Renal Data System (USRDS): What’s New from 2018

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Oct 16, 2019

No individual data source exists that captures the disease experiences of all Americans who live with kidney disease. A large proportion of the USRDS information is drawn from Medicare beneficiaries. However, they are not a nationally representative population. Since 2017, two new data sources have been utilized that have expanded the USRDS’s coverage of the U.S. population.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

USRDS Weighs in on the Vascular Access

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Oct 14, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume II: Chapter 3)

Clinical practice guidelines from the National Kidney Foundation in 2006 recommend an autogenous arteriovenous (AV) fistula as the preferred vascular access for hemodialysis. Central venous catheters are associated with higher risks of death, infection and cardiovascular events than other types of vascular access. Patients with a usable AV fistula exhibit the lowest risks for these events.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Healthcare Expenditures for Persons with CKD in 2018

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Oct 7, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume 1, Chapter 7: www.usrds.org)

Persons with chronic kidney disease (CKD), but not end-stage renal disease (ESRD) often have extensive healthcare needs and frequently face coexisting illnesses. Medicare beneficiaries enrolled in managed care grew from 13 percent in 2004 to 33 percent in 2017. In March 2017, 19 million individuals were enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Prescription Drug Coverage for ESRD Patients

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Sep 30, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume II: Chapter 10)

Pharmaceutical therapy is integral to ESRD treatment and has positive health outcomes. Medications combined with the clinical and socioeconomic status of ESRD patients make their prescription drug benefits particularly important. Drug coverage, drug-related costs, and patterns of prescription drug use for end-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients is irrelevant information. Analgesics used by ESRD patients is of particular interest because of the continuing opioid epidemic. Another category of prescription meds worth examining is prescription antivirals, a category with high and growing costs.

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Cardiovascular Disease in ESRD Patients

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Sep 23, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume II: Chapter 8)

Patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD) are among the highest risk populations for cardiovascular diseases (CVDs)—a major cause of death in ESRD patients. The relationship between kidney disease and acute myocardial infarction (AMI), coronary artery disease (CAD), heart failure (HF), and sudden death/cardiac arrhythmias is complex and bi-directional. ESRD often complicates disease management of CVD, influencing both medical and procedural options, thereby adversely affecting a patient’s prognosis.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

ESRD Among Children, Adolescents and Young Adults

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Sep 11, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume II: Chapter 7)

In children, adolescents and young adults, end-stage renal disease (ESRD) is caused by both congenital and acquired disorders. A majority of children with ESRD will depend on the spectrum of the available renal replacement therapies throughout their lifetime, including hemodialysis, peritoneal dialysis and transplantation. Throughout their ESRD experience, children are at risk for failure to grow, frequent hospitalizations, and significantly higher mortality than the general pediatric population. Hospitalizations due to medical or surgical indications are a particular burden to the ESRD population.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Acute Kidney Injury (AKI): CKD Risk Factor

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Sep 2, 2019

(Gleaned from the 2018 USRDS Annual Data Report: Volume 1, Chapter 5: www.usrds.org)

Acute kidney injury (AKI), also called acute renal failure, is a rapid loss of kidney function. It is a common complication among hospitalized patients and is associated with both morbidity and mortality. 

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