Article Text

Download PDFPDF
Late referral for assessment of renal failure
  1. Frank Kee1,
  2. Elizabeth A Reaney1,
  3. A Peter Maxwell2,
  4. Damian G Fogarty2,
  5. Gerard Savage1,
  6. C Christopher Patterson1,
  7. on behalf of the Northern Ireland TSN Renal Group
  1. 1Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, the Queens University of Belfast, UK
  2. 2Department of Renal Medicine, the Queens University of Belfast
  1. Correspondence to:
 Professor F Kee
 Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, The Queens University of Belfast, Mulhouse Building, Grosvenor Road, Belfast BT12 6BJ, UK;


It has been recommended that adult patients with a serum creatinine above 150 μmol/l should be referred to a nephrologist for specialist assessment. This study ascertained all patients in Northern Ireland with creatinine above this concentration in 2001 (n = 19 286 ) to see if this triggered referral within the subsequent year. After exclusion of those who were already known to a nephrologist and those who had acute renal failure, it was found that younger patients and diabetic patients were more likely to be referred. There was no difference in referral rates between male and female patients. However, only 6.5% of all non-diabetic subjects and 19% of diabetic patients were referred within 12 months after a first increased serum creatinine test.

  • late referral renal failure

Statistics from

Request Permissions

If you wish to reuse any or all of this article please use the link below which will take you to the Copyright Clearance Center’s RightsLink service. You will be able to get a quick price and instant permission to reuse the content in many different ways.


  • The membership of the Targeting Social Need Renal Group also includes: Dr Claire Willis (Department of Health and Social Services and Public Safety). Mr Sean McCann (Information and Analysis Branch, Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency). Professor Philip Reilly, Department of General Practice, the Queens University of Belfast. Ms Hazel Grandidier, Department of General Practice, the Queens University of Belfast. Mr Colin Fox, Northern Ireland Cancer Registry.The views expressed in the paper are those of the authors and not of their employers.

  • Funding: The study was supported by a TSN Commissioned Research Award from the DHSSPSNI Research and Development Office.

  • Competing interests: APM served on the DHSSPSNI team that led the Northern Ireland Regional Review of Renal Services, 2002.

Linked Articles