Interview

Prevention Of Kidney Disease Is Simple Says Dr Umesh Khanna

Mumbai: Dr. Umesh B Khanna is a Consultant Nephrologist & Transplant Physician based in Mumbai, practicing at Lancelot Kidney & GI Centre in Borivali West. Dr. Khanna excelled at academics right from his early school days and bagged innumerable certificates, medals, and scholarships for regularly finishing amongst the toppers at almost every examination. He did his undergraduate and postgraduate medical education at Seth G S Medical College and KEM Hospital in Mumbai.

Dr. Khanna has been in private practice for over 25 years, since May 1987. He has vast experience in Clinical Nephrology, Haemodialysis, Continuous Ambulatory Peritoneal Dialysis (CAPD), Kidney Transplants, Critical Care Medicine, CAVH, CAVHD & IPD, and Hypertension. Dr. Umesh Khanna laid a foundation for kidney patients 10 years ago known as Mumbai Kidney Foundation (MKF).

In a recent interaction with The Prevalent India, Dr. Umesh Khanna spoke about various ways to prevent Kidney Disease.

What has inspired you to laid this Kidney Foundation?

Inspiration was our teacher and Guru in KEM hospital, Dr. Vidya Acharya, who taught us to give back to society & help patients.

How exactly the patients with chronic failure are helped by MKF?

When we started the kidney foundation, it was to help financially, the patients on dialysis. We then decided to work on awareness of the disease in society and then on Prevention of Kidney disease and controlling diabetes, blood pressure, and obesity the main reason for developing kidney failure. We also have a patient support group helping and guiding them when they have problems, be it physical or mental. 

What are the roles of other nephrologists and technicians in making this foundation a huge success?

We have a strong group that helps and supports all our campaigns, whether it is teaching or training of health care workers or primary care physicians, or GPs. Also our signature campaigns, “Know your numbers (BP, weight, and sugar)” and “Ek Chammach Kum” (that is 30% reduction in salt, oil, and sugar), need the help of nephrologists, technicians, and other health care workers.

How MKF is playing its role in creating awareness in the young population?

Amongst the youth, we are propagating our 2 main campaigns – a) Know your numbers and b) Ek Chammach Kum, through school assembly talks, camps, and social media campaigns, and essay competitions.

MKF is different from other kidney foundations?

MKF differs as it has focused mainly on the prevention of kidney disease by controlling the NCDs (Noncommunicable diseases)

You are the first nephrologist who came up with the idea of a Nephrologist-owned-and-managed private dialysis unit. How does it feel?

Anything you do for the first time is always exciting and if you do it successfully and the model becomes a hit, then it is always a proud moment in your life.

How can we prevent more kidney-related issues so as to reduce the prevalence of dialysis and transplants?

For prevention of kidney disease the formula in simple-Firstly you have to know your numbers- Every person beyond 35 years of age should know his numbers of blood pressure, sugar, and weight as I mentioned earlier. You need to control NCDs (Diabetes, BP, and obesity) with diet, exercise, salt reduction, and lifestyle changes. Ek Chammach kum aur char kadam zyada (One spoon less, four steps more) it’s completely in your hands. Then avoidance of harmful drugs such as pain killers will also add to the prevention.No smoking, smoking increases your chances of being affected with not only kidney diseases but also others. Regular health check-up, especially kidney check-up. (Urine routine and blood creatinine), if you find any abnormalities then consult a Nephrologist immediately. Lastly, Prompt treatment of stone disease is necessary. If we all follow this, definitely the prevention will be on the higher side.

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