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© British Journal of General Practice. Background Chronic kidney disease (CKD) is diagnosed using the estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) and the urinary albumin:creatinine ratio (ACR). The eGFR is calculated from serum creatinine levels using the Modification of Diet in Renal Disease (MDRD) or Chronic Kidney Disease Epidemiology Collaboration (CKD-EPI) equations. Aim To compare the performance of one versus two eGFR/ACR measurements, and the impact of equation choice, on CKD diagnosis and classification. Design and setting Cohort study in primary care in the Thames Valley region of the UK. Method Data were from 485 participants aged >60 years in the Oxford Renal Cohort Study with at least two eGFR tests. The proportion of study participants diagnosed and classified into different CKD stages using one and two positive tests were compared. Prevalence of CKD diagnosis and classification by CKD stage were compared when eGFR was calculated using MDRD and CKD-EPI equations. Results Participants included in the analysis had a mean age of 72.1 (±6.8) years and 57.0% were female. Use of a single screening test overestimated the proportion of people with CKD by around 25% no matter which equation was used, compared with the use of two tests. The mean eGFR was 1.4 ml/min/1.73 m2 (95% CI = 1.1 to 1.6) higher using the CKD-EPI equation compared with the MDRD equation. More patients were diagnosed with CKD when using the MDRD equation, compared with the CKD-EPI equation, once (64% versus 63%, respectively) and twice (39% versus 38%, respectively), and 16 individuals, all of who had CKD stages 2 or 3A with MDRD, were reclassified as having a normal urinary ACR when using the CKD-EPI equation. Conclusion Current guidance to use two eGFR measures to diagnose CKD remains appropriate in an older primary care population to avoid overdiagnosis. A change from MDRD to CKD-EPI equation could result in one in 12 patients with a CKD diagnosis with MDRD no longer having a diagnosis of CKD.

Original publication




Journal article


British Journal of General Practice

Publication Date





e524 - e530