In this issue of Clinical Kidney Journal, Brown and colleagues show that symptom burden is high across all stages of chronic kidney disease (CKD). Still, management of symptoms in kidney patients leaves room for improvement, which may partly stem from symptoms being underreported. The use of patient-reported questionnaires may facilitate a more systematic approach to symptom assessment, but to date, the majority of these instruments have been used only in the context of research studies. In this editorial, we review how systematic patient-reported symptom assessments can be incorporated in CKD care. We show examples from an initiative in the UK where 14 renal units explored how to collect and use symptom burden assessments as part of their routine ways of working. We also discuss how to move from paper-based questionnaires towards digital collection of patient-reported symptom data. Lastly, we introduce wearable and smartphone sensors as novel methods for collecting information to support and enrich symptom assessments while minimizing data collection burden.
- chronic renal insufficiency
- medical informatics
- patient reported outcome measures
- symptom assessment