Kidney disease deaths almost tripled in Bangladesh last year compared to 2019 while deaths from some other diseases, including brain stroke, breast cancer, and diabetes, increased significantly.
The vital statistics survey of Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics (BBS) found that 28,017 people had died from kidney disease in 2020, up from 10,622 a year before.
The survey findings were unveiled at a media briefing at the BBS office in the capital's Agargaon on Wednesday. Statistics and Informatics Division Secretary Mohammad Yamin Chowdhury and BBS Director General Mohammad Tajul Islam were present there.
Kidney diseases are spreading due to diabetes, high blood pressure, kidney pain, use of painkillers, excessive use of antibiotics, taking herbal medicines, drinking contaminated water, and eating adulterated food. Pollution is also responsible for spreading such diseases.
Dr Mohib Ullah Khondoker, vice principal at the Gonoshasthaya Samaj Vittik Medical College, told The Business Standard diabetes and high blood pressure are closely linked to kidney disease.
He said around 80 lakh people are currently suffering from diabetes, and two crore from high blood pressure, in the country.
Treatment and awareness are necessary for those suffering from diabetes and high blood pressure, he said.
Dr Muhib further said kidney disease treatment cost is very high and deaths from this disease are on the rise as people cannot afford to continue treatment.
"People are suffering from other diseases apart from kidney disease, which is also causing deaths to increase. There is no substitute for a healthy lifestyle to prevent kidney disease."
Kidney disease alone doubled brain stroke deaths in 2020 while breast cancer deaths almost tripled and jaundice deaths doubled.
Officials said many cannot afford treatment costs and that is why deaths from these diseases are increasing.
No death from acquired immunodeficiency syndrome (AIDS) was reported in 2019 and 2020 while 8,248 people died from coronavirus last year.
The survey findings were prepared based on information from 2,012 sample areas across the country.