A new kidney function test known as symmetric dimethylarginine (SDMA) can potentially identify the onset of kidney disease in dogs and cats months or even years earlier than other traditional testing methods. This earlier diagnosis greatly expands treatment options in affected pets.
The groundbreaking renal biomarker identifies the onset of kidney disease at 40% loss of function – far earlier than traditional methods (such as blood creatinine), which do not detect renal disease until 75% of kidney function is lost and prognosis is poor. Earlier detection is crucial, as outward symptoms of kidney disease generally go unnoticed until the late stages of the disease. As the illness can be impossible to cure or reverse, earlier diagnosis allows for disease management to prevent/slow down the progression of symptoms and preserve the pet’s quality of life.
In some cases, kidney disease is genetic and can affect pets of any age, but certainly older pets are susceptible to kidney damage from underlying illnesses such as dental disease, infections or inflammatory processes that can damage kidneys. Chronic kidney disease (CKD) progresses slowly over months or years, and is very common in cats and dogs, but especially so in pets over seven years of age.
CKD is a leading cause of suffering and death in cats and dogs. Recent studies indicate that CKD affects 40% of cats under 15 years of age and up to 80% of cats over 15 years of age; this indicates that CKD has been previously under-recognized.
IDEXX Laboratories unveiled the new test at the North American Veterinary Conference in January 2015; in July of that year, IDEXX announced that the test will be automatically included in all routine chemistry panels from IDEXX Reference Laboratories in the U.S. at no additional cost and with the same rapid turnaround time as routine chemistry panels.
Ask your veterinarian about getting baseline blood tests – including a SDMA test -on your pet.
IDEXX Laboratories, Inc. is headquartered in Maine and serves veterinarians with a broad range of diagnostic and information technology-based products and services. Learn more about SDMA testing on the IDEXX website or call them at 1-888-433-9987.
Comparison of Serum Concentrations of Symmetric Dimethylarginine and Creatinine as Kidney Function Biomarkers in Cats with Chronic Kidney Disease
Symmetric Dimethylarginine Assay Validation, Stability, and Evaluation as a Marker for the Early Detection of Chronic Kidney Disease in Dogs