Educational Activities on Renal Failure

By Prev Info - October 19, 2022

 Renal failure, or the loss of kidney function, afflicts more than 26 million Americans, or 13 percent of the adult population, according to the National Kidney Foundation. Some 367,000 people are on dialysis -- a mechanized system that functions like the kidneys, cleaning blood and removing bodily fluid, and 158,000 have had successful kidney transplants. Diabetes and high blood pressure are the leading causes of renal failure, accounting for about 70 percent of cases.

Dialysis Units

Most dialysis units, which can be in hospitals or private institutions, provide educational materials. Nutritionists are often on site to educate patients about foods. Without kidney function, patients must limit certain ingredients, particularly potassium and phosphorous, that would normally be controlled by the kidneys. Kidney doctors (nephrologists) and nurses provide education on medications administered through the machine or taken separately.


Many hospitals provide education for patients in their libraries and websites. Johns Hopkins Hospital in Baltimore, Maryland, for example, has an online health library that contains treatment, diagnostic and preventive information on end stage renal disease (ESRD), or total kidney failure. Other examples include The Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, and the New York Presbyterian Hospital in New York City, which have online health information sites containing many articles on renal failure.

Medical Organizations

Well-established medical organizations provide education on renal failure through their websites. Prominent among them are organizations that specialize in kidney disease, such as the National Kidney Foundation and the American Kidney Fund. The National Kidney Foundation publishes many pamphlets on renal failure, purchasable online, with such titles as "Clinical Handbook on Nutrition in Chronic Renal Failure" and "Anemia and Chronic Kidney Failure." The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has podcasts and other online educational materials.

Videos and Tutorials

Educational videos and tutorials on renal failure are available on many websites. One of the most authoritative is the National Institutes of Health's Medline Plus, which offers videos or interactive tutorials on renal failure, treatment options and transplant. Its Patient Education Institute provides interactive multimedia presentations -- some in Spanish -- for hospitals, physicians' offices and other health-care settings.