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Open Access Open Badges Research article

The prevalence and characteristics of microalbuminuria in the general population: a cross-sectional study

Satoru Tanaka1, Hiroyuki Takase2, Yasuaki Dohi1* and Genjiro Kimura13

Author Affiliations

1 Department of Cardio-Renal Medicine and Hypertension, Nagoya City University Graduate School of Medical Sciences, Nagoya, Japan

2 Department of Internal Medicine, Enshu Hospital, Hamamatsu, Japan

3 Department of Internal Medicine, Asahi Rousai Hospital, Owariasahi, Japan

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BMC Research Notes 2013, 6:256  doi:10.1186/1756-0500-6-256

Published: 7 July 2013



Microalbuminuria is a marker of cardiovascular events. This study investigated the prevalence of microalbuminuria in the general population and the factors that can affect urinary excretion of albumin.


Apparently healthy subjects who participated in a health checkup at our hospital were enrolled in this study (n = 7963, male 64.0%, 56.2 ± 11.8 years old) Urine samples were collected for the measurement of albumin concentrations, which were expressed as the ratio of urinary albumin to creatinine concentrations (UACR [mg/g Cr]). Individual salt intake was assessed by estimating the 24-hour urinary salt excretion of subjects.


The mean blood pressure was 124 ± 15/76 ± 10 mmHg and 31.6%, 7.4%, and 44.1% of subjects had hypertension, diabetes mellitus, and dyslipidemia, respectively. Urinary albumin was detected in 7265 subjects (91.2%: UACR ≥ 300 mg/g Cr, 0.5%; 300 > UACR ≥ 30 mg/g Cr, 4.6%; 30 > UACR ≥ 20 mg/g Cr, 2.4%; 20 > UACR ≥ 10 mg/g Cr, 8.7%; 10 > UACR ≥ 5 mg/g Cr, 21.8%; UACR < 5 mg/g Cr, 53.2%). In subjects with detectable albuminuria, UACR was independently correlated with age, systolic blood pressure, serum creatinine, fasting plasma glucose, and salt intake after adjustment for possible factors (P < 0.0001).


The prevalence of microalbuminuria was found to be 4.6% in the general population. The urinary excretion of albumin was closely associated with blood pressure and salt intake. These data indicated the importance of salt restriction for the prevention of cardiovascular disease and end-stage renal disease.

Blood pressure; General population; Hypertension; Microalbuminuria; Salt