Historical Milestones of Renal Replacement Therapy in Ethiopia

  • Mahteme Bekele


Background:  End-stage kidney disease is a growing and leading cause of morbidity and mortality worldwide, thus the need of renal replacement therapy (RRT), defined as dialysis or kidney transplantation, is expected to rise. In Africa, RRT was available as early as 1957, but initiation and maintenance of the service remains a major challenge for many parts of the continent.

Objectives: This study aimed to document the major historical milestones that were achieved to successfully establish renal replacement therapy in Ethiopia and the lesson learned from a historical point of view.

Method: This study utilized mixed method of quantitative and qualitative study. Data was collected from June 1, 2018 – July 30 2018. Data about the hemodialysis service in all parts of the country was collected by structured questionnaire, and a descriptive analysis was performed. The data about kidney transplant service was collected from the only transplant center in the country, St Paul’s Hospital Millennium Medical College (SPHMMC). 

Result:- The first dialysis service started in 1980 at Tikure Anbessa specialized hospital  but a maintenance  dialysis service started in 2001 at St Gabriel Hospital. The expansion of the service was restricted to Addis Ababa until recently, and majority of the dialysis service was provided by the private sector. The first successful human kidney transplant happened in September 2015 at SPHMMC.

Key words;- Renal Replacement therapy, Dialysis,  Kidney Transplant ,Ethiopia ,Historical milestone