Kidney Failure​

Leading Cause – Hypertension

Hypertension (high blood pressure) is the second leading cause of kidney failure in Singapore. It is often called the ‘silent killer’, because it does not always produce symptoms. 1 in 4 Singaporean adults have hypertension (high blood pressure).

Blood pressure is the force exerted by the blood on the blood vessels and the heart. It has two components:

Blood pressure is the force of the blood as it flows through the blood vessels and the heart. Hypertension or high blood pressure is defined as blood pressure consistently exceeding 140/90mmHg when the person is at rest. Factors that can cause high blood pressure are having extra fluid in the blood and blood vessels that are narrow, stiff, or clogged.

High blood pressure can damage blood vessels in the kidneys, reducing their ability to work properly. They may then be unable to remove waste and extra fluid from the body. Extra fluid in the blood vessels may further increase blood pressure even more, creating a vicious cycle that could damage the kidneys.

Signs & Symptoms

Persistent headaches

Blurred or double vision


Shortness of breath

Uncontrolled high blood pressure may lead to other serious complications like heart attack, stroke, and blindness as well.

How does uncontrolled hypertension affect my kidneys?

  • Uncontrolled hypertension damages and weakens the
    blood vessel walls in the kidneys

  • The damaged blood vessels are not able to receive the
    oxygen and nutrients they need to function well

  • Kidneys lose their ability to filter blood and regulate the fluid, hormones, acids and salts in the body

  • Extra fluid and toxic wastes accumulated in the body may
    increase the blood pressure even more, creating a
    dangerous cycle

What to look out for?
Hypertension or high blood pressure (HBP) is defined as a blood pressure consistently exceeding 140/90mmHg when resting.

Blood Pressure Systolic BP*** (mmHg) Diastolic BP*** (mmHg)
Normal Less than 120 Less than 80
Borderline 130 — 139 80 — 89
High 140 or greater 90 or greater

(HPB, 2019)       

Controlling blood pressure is a lifelong commitment. Hypertension is reversible with lifestyle changes!

Dietary modifications, including salt and alcohol restriction, as well as weight reduction, have been shown to be beneficial in the treatment of Hypertension.

Learn more on how to monitor and manage your blood pressure.

Contact Details
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The National Kidney Foundation (NKF) strives to be an advocate and integrator for kidney health and holistic care for the community by the community. While supporting kidney failure patients with quality dialysis treatment and integrated care, its greater mission lies in preventing or delaying kidney failure through kidney health education with deeper integration into the community and strategic collaborative partnerships.
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