Epidemiology of Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) has changed radically in the past 15 years: we have observed an exponential increase of cases with high mortality and residual disability, particularly in those patients who need dialysis treatment. Those who survive AKI have an increased risk of requiring dialysis after hospital discharge over the short term as well as long term. They have an increased risk of deteriorating residual kidney function and cardiovascular events as well as a shorter life expectancy.
Given the severe prognosis, difficulties of treatment, high level of resources needed, increased workload and consequently costs, several aspects of AKI have not been sufficiently investigated. Any national register of AKI has not been developed and its absence has an impact on provisional strategies. Specific training should be planned beginning with University, which should include practical training in Intensive Care Units. A definition of the organizational characteristics and requirements for the care of AKI is needed.
Treatment of AKI is not based exclusively on dialysis efficiency or technology, but also on professional skills, volume of activity, clinical experience, model of healthcare organizations, continuity of processes and medical activities to guarantee such as a closed-staff system.
Progress in knowledge and technology has only partially modified the outcome and prognosis of AKI patients; consequently, new strategies based on increased awareness, on the implementation of professional skills, and on revision, definition and updating of resources for the organization of AKI management are needed and expected over the short term.
Full text of the article is available in Italian.