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May 1969

Current Problems in the Delivery of Dialysis and Renal Transplantation

Author Affiliations

Washington, DC

From the Renal and Electrolyte Division, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC.

Arch Intern Med. 1969;123(5):558-567. doi:10.1001/archinte.1969.00300150076011

It has been said that a specialty comes of age when it acquires a successful therapy for a previously untreatable condition. By this criterion, nephrology has aged quickly. Uremia, the final common pathway for so many renal diseases, is now treatable by not one, but two new therapies: transplantation and dialysis. In dwelling on some of the major problems in this area, we mean in no way to diminish the positive aspects of these achievements, but there is more to be learned from an inventory of problems than a parade of triumphs.

It is an irony of the times that we can predict to the nearest decimal point the number of voters favoring a specific candidate in a particular county, but that we really have not a vague idea of how many Americans will die from the failure of one of their most vital organs. We have only the most