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Race, Ethnicity, & Kidney Disease

African Americans, Hispanics, and American Indians are at high risk for developing kidney failure. This risk is due in part to high rates of diabetes and high blood pressure in these communities. Below is more information about kidney failure for each of these groups.

An African American man and a Hispanic woman look interested as they sit next to each other in a row

African Americans

African Americans are almost four times as likely as Whites to develop kidney failure.

While African Americans make up about 13 percent of the population, they account for 35 percent of the people with kidney failure in the United States. Diabetes and high blood pressure are the leading causes of kidney failure among African Americans.

Learn more about the impact of kidney disease on African Americans and steps to keep the kidneys healthy.


A growing number of Hispanics are diagnosed with kidney disease each year. Since 2000, the number of Hispanics with kidney failure has increased by more than 70 percent.

Compared to non-Hispanics, Hispanics are almost 1.3 times more likely to be diagnosed with kidney failure.

Para información y recursos sobre la enfermedad de los riñones en español, visite nuestro sitio en español.

American Indians and Alaska Natives

American Indians also are disproportionately affected by kidney failure. Compared to Whites, American Indians are about 1.2 times more likely to be diagnosed with kidney failure. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure among American Indians. However, better diabetes care is reducing the risk for kidney failure in American Indians with diabetes.

Visit the Indian Health Service's website to view materials for American Indians and Alaska Natives.


Last Reviewed March 2014
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This content is provided as a service of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK), part of the National Institutes of Health. NIDDK translates and disseminates research findings to increase knowledge and understanding about health and disease among patients, health professionals, and the public. Content produced by NIDDK is carefully reviewed by NIDDK scientists and other experts.