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Check-ups "may stop kidney disease"

A national charity has said that few people have a check-up for kidney disease, even though about three million across the UK people may be at risk.

Kidney Research UK said lives could be saved if people go for a simple blood pressure check up at the doctors.

Diabetes is the most common cause of kidney disease, followed by high blood pressure.

Across the UK, 1.7 million people are affected by kidney disease.

Ivan Klasnic, the Bolton Wanderers and Croatia forward, needed two kidney transplants, although he feels they could have both been prevented.

"Kidney disease is often a silent disease but a simple blood pressure check may indicate early diagnosis," he said.

"Had my kidney disease been picked up early I feel that I could have avoided having not one, but two kidney transplants."

At the moment, 45,000 people in the UK are being treated for kidney failure and prevalence of kidney failure is rising by 5% each year.

Donal O'Donoghue, the government's National Clinical Director for Kidney Care, said: "Anyone who is worried that they may be at risk of kidney disease can talk to their GP who may do simple blood and urine tests, or use the online self-assessment tool.

"People can also reduce their risk of kidney disease by making simple lifestyle changes like eating more healthily, stopping smoking and exercising more."

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