Book cover for The Body's Keepers

The Body's Keepers

A Social History of Kidney Failure and Its Treatments

Description of the book

The kidney is an extraordinary organ—in many ways the regulator, the metronome, the keeper of the human body’s delicate equilibrium. On a given day, minute by minute, it purifies the body of toxins it encounters from diet, climate, activity, and injury. It allows us to be and to move in the world. And yet most of us know so very little about these extraordinary vessels nestled in our bodies—and indeed millions of us only really learn about them when they stop working. Nearly a million Americans every year have end stage kidney disease, about 37 million have some form of chronic kidney disease. And it is an incredibly common universe of challenge and ailment that, until relatively recently, would simply kill those afflicted with it. Renowned nephrologist Dr. Paul Kimmel takes us on an eye-opening journey through the history of kidney disease, dialysis, and transplantation. Drawing on both his extensive research and decades of experience in the field, he explains the development of treatments, technologies, and medical practices that have advanced the care of patients with kidney disease. Kimmel illuminates the impact of medical advances on the lives of those suffering from this debilitating disease and offers a clear understanding of the challenges that remain.