Alexion Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: ALXN) today announced its support of World Kidney Day 2013, a global awareness campaign led by the International Society of Nephrology (ISN) and the International Federation of Kidney Foundations. Celebrated on the second Thursday in March each year, the mission of World Kidney Day is to raise awareness of the importance of our kidneys to overall health and to reduce the incidence and impact of kidney disease and its associated health problems worldwide. This year’s campaign -“Kidney’s for Life - Stop Kidney Attack!” - aims to educate the general public and the healthcare community about diseases that affect the kidneys and the importance of early detection and intervention. Alexion is pleased to sponsor this initiative and joins other leading companies engaged in researching and delivering innovative therapies to improve the lives of patients suffering from life-threatening disorders, including those that impact the kidneys.
Many health conditions that damage kidney function can severely affect a patient’s quality of life and progress to end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and premature death. One such disease is atypical hemolytic uremic syndrome (aHUS), a chronic, life-threatening ultra-rare disease that can progressively damage vital organs, including the kidney. Patients with aHUS experience kidney damage and kidney failure leading to ESRD.
Sixty-five percent of patients with aHUS require kidney dialysis, have permanent kidney damage or die within the first year after diagnosis despite plasma exchange or plasma infusion (PE/PI).
"At the age of 28, I was experiencing renal failure but my doctors were not able to pinpoint the cause of it,” says Jill Ziegler, a young adult diagnosed with aHUS. “Subsequently, I was diagnosed with a severe and life-threatening condition that is so rare that many nephrologists have never seen a case of it. I tried to maintain some semblance of a normal life with my family, but I remained in end stage kidney failure and on permanent dialysis. Fortunately, I was able to have a kidney transplant and receive a new treatment for aHUS. Today I want others with aHUS to know that help is out there and they are not alone.”