Chronic kidney ailments in NCP:
Nephrotoxic heavy metals, key causative factor
A latest research out by the Health Ministry with the technical
support of the World Health Organization (WHO) has revealed that one of
the key causative factors for the mystery chronic
kidney ailments suffered by people in the North Central Province is
co exposure to low concentration of Nephrotoxic heavy metals.
Nephrotoxic heavy metals include cadmium and arsenic. The Health
Ministry spokesman said the results have also revealed that about 15
percent of people in the North Central Province have been affected by
chronic kidney diseases.
These cases were also reported from Giradurukotte in Badulla district
and Nikawewa in Kurunegala district which belong to the Uva and North
Western Provinces respectively.
Research has revealed that heavy metals enter the body mainly through
the food chain and possibly also through air pollution. It also revealed
that water is not the source of this exposure. However, according to the
study, improving water quality and lowering the current levels of heavy
metals in soil can help to reduce the body burden of heavy metals. It
also stated that prevention of indiscriminate use of fertilizer and
certain pesticides which harm kidney properties can help to protect the
vulnerable segments of the population.
This research was launched in 2009 to investigate the magnitude and
cause of chronic kidney diseases with a view to developing appropriate
The spokesman said this comprehensive national research is still
ongoing. The National Science Foundation and WHO are funding for the
research initiative. Health Minister Maithripala Sirisena yesterday
convened a high level meeting of the Ministries of Health, Agriculture,
Social Services, Irrigation and Water Resources Management, Indegenous
Medicine and Science and Technology to discuss immediate and long term
remedial measures to address the situation. These research findings were
presented during this meeting.
He said a technical report on the findings of the research would be
published in the coming few months.