Chronic kidney disease and cardiovascular disease share many risk factors. Injury to the vascular endothelium, measured by elevated levels of serum C-reactive protein (CRP), may play a role in kidney and cardiovascular disease. We therefore examined the association of CRP with microalbuminuria, a marker of early kidney injury. We conducted a cross-sectional analysis of a nationally representative, population-based survey. Weighted multiple logistic regression was used to study the association between CRP and microalbuminuria, adjusting for well-known risk factors. CRP was analyzed by a continuous variable and two categorized variables using quartiles and clinically recommended cutpoints. CRP concentration was positively associated with microalbuminuria. In the multivariate model, a one unit (in milligrams per liter) increase in CRP concentration was associated with a 2% increased odds of microalbuminuria (odds ratio 1.02, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.01 to 1.02, p = 0.0003). When CRP concentrations were stratified by clinically recommended cutpoints, compared with persons with CRP concentrations <1 mg/dl, persons with CRP concentrations between 1 and 3 mg/L and >3 mg/L were 1.15 times (95% CI 0.94 to 1.42) and 1.33 times (95% CI 1.08 to 1.65) more likely to have microalbuminuria, respectively. In subgroup analyses, the strength of association was comparable or stronger. In conclusion, elevated CRP levels were associated with microalbuminuria in a large, nationally representative data set. Vascular inflammation, as measured by CRP, may be a common contributor to early heart and kidney disease.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine