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BioMed Research International
Volume 2016, Article ID 4278579, 6 pages
Review Article

Hospital Mortality in the United States following Acute Kidney Injury

1The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice, Geisel School of Medicine, Lebanon, NH 03756, USA
2Department of Medicine, Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon, NH 03756, USA
3Department of Community and Family Medicine, Lebanon, NH 03756, USA
4Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, Rochester, MI 48309, USA
5Geriatrics Research Education & Clinical Center (GRECC), Tennessee Valley Healthcare System (TVHS), Veterans Health Administration, Nashville, TN 37232, USA
6Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232, USA
7Department of Biomedical Informatics, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232, USA
8Department of Biostatistics, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, TN 37232, USA

Received 15 March 2016; Accepted 8 May 2016

Academic Editor: George Seki

Copyright © 2016 Jeremiah R. Brown et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Acute kidney injury (AKI) is a common reason for hospital admission and complication of many inpatient procedures. The temporal incidence of AKI and the association of AKI admissions with in-hospital mortality are a growing problem in the world today. In this review, we discuss the epidemiology of AKI and its association with in-hospital mortality in the United States. AKI has been growing at a rate of 14% per year since 2001. However, the in-hospital mortality associated with AKI has been on the decline starting with 21.9% in 2001 to 9.1 in 2011, even though the number of AKI-related in-hospital deaths increased almost twofold from 147,943 to 285,768 deaths. We discuss the importance of the 71% reduction in AKI-related mortality among hospitalized patients in the United States and draw on the discussion of whether or not this is a phenomenon of hospital billing (coding) or improvements to the management of AKI.