Harvard medical team visits Borivanka village in Kaviti mandal of Uddanam region to study chronic kidney disease

Harvard medical team visits Borivanka village in Kaviti mandal of Uddanam region to study chronic kidney disease

VISAKHAPATNAM,July31: A two-member team from Harvard Medical School accompanied by Dr NTR University of Health Sciences vice-chancellor Dr T Ravi Raju visited Borivanka village in Kaviti mandal of Uddanam region on Saturday to study the prevalent chronic kidney disease (CKD).

They interacted with nearly 200 patients drawn from about 15 villages in the region and sought information from them such as the duration of disease, food habits, drinking water sources, medicinal history, pesticides used for their farmlands and working conditions.

The team also learned about the earlier studies conducted on Uddanam nephropathy by King George Hospital and other institutions in a meeting conducted at Andhra Medical College.

Past president of the American Society of Nephrology and Chief of the Renal Unit and Director of the Bioengineering Division at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Dr Joseph Bonventre said that they are hopeful of demystifying the Uddanam nephropathy in coordination with doctors and officials of Dr NTR University of Health Sciences, KGH and other institutions.

“The increasing CKD prevalence is a global phenomenon. We want to develop treatment strategies for the patients and find the root cause of the disease to prevent future cases. Even though it may not happen overnight or in a year, we are hopeful of arriving at a definite root cause,” said Dr Bonvontre.

Dr Venkata S Sabbisetti, a renowned instructor in medicine, explained how Pawan Kalyan’s speech at Harvard inspired them to take up the research work. “When we were stuck in dilemma as to how we can approach the issue, Pawan Kalyan’s visit to the Harvard paved a way for our research. We are in regular contact with him since then and have finally come to Vizag. We will collaborate with the local doctors and officials and work on the issue,” he said.

Dr Ravi Raju elaborated on the earlier studies conducted by KGH and other institutions. “Several hypotheses such as high levels of silica in water, prolonged dehydration, heat stress nephropathy, NSAID usage, gene mutations, high pesticide usage, heavy metals in water and so on have been put forward. The state government has established speciality clinics and dialysis centres in the region for the kidney disease patients. About 15% patients were found to have higher creatinine levels during the recent tests conducted by the state government this year in Uddanam region,” he added.