Number of people suffering from diabetes related kidney failure 'will double over next decade'

Kidney patient Noel Ashmead receiving treatment on a dialysis machine at Guys Hospital in London. Credit: Lewis Whyld/PA Wire

The number of people suffering from diabetes related kidney failure and needing regular dialysis treatments is expected to double over the next ten years, a leading health charity has warned.

Diabetes UK said kidney failure already cost the NHS £940m annually as thousands of Brits are suffering from it.

Some 18,800 people are unable to digest food properly because of diabetes and need dialysis to remove waste and water from the blood in the UK, the charity said.

If current trends continue, this number would rise to 35,000 by the year 2025.

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Diabetes UK want regular kidney checks for the 3.2 million people suffering from diabetes in the United Kingdom as it would stem the tide of dialysis patients.

One of the tests for kidney function, which looks for a protein called microalbumin in urine, is the least carried out care process and figures show about a quarter of those eligible do not get this checked.

Microalbumin is an early warning sign of severe damage to the kidneys, and if identified early, doctors can act to prevent the organs from failing.

As many as 11.5 million people are at high risk of developing Type 2 diabetes and if current trends continue, an estimated 5 million people will have the condition by 2025.

Diabetes sufferer Melissa Bell told Good Morning Britain living with kidney failure was hard as it "takes over your life".

Ms Bell, who is X Factor winner Alexandra Burke's mum, said she had to see a psychologist to "get round the fact this was happening to me".