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Canadian Med Center

Jardiance and Its Role in CKD Management

Thursday 14 March 2024
Chronic Kidney Disease
5 minute(s) read

Table of Contents

I. What is Jardiance?

II. How Does Jardiance Work?

III. What is Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)?

IV. Jardiance and Chronic Kidney Disease

V. Conclusion

Initially developed for type 2 diabetes, Jardiance has now emerged as a valuable therapeutic option for those with chronic kidney disease (CKD). Its unique mechanism of action has been supported by strong clinical evidence, with trials such as EMPA-KIDNEY highlighting its ability to slow down the progression of CKD.

In this article, we'll discuss what Jardiance is, how it works, and its role in managing CKD.

What is Jardiance?

Jardiance is a once-daily oral prescription medication the FDA has approved for multiple uses since it first came on the market in 2014. Initially, it was only indicated for treating type 2 diabetes in adults. [1] However, over the years, Jardiance has gained additional FDA approvals that have expanded its therapeutic benefits for patients.

  • 2016: Jardiance was approved to reduce the risk of cardiovascular death in adults with type 2 diabetes. This meant it could now treat diabetes while also helping protect the heart health of these patients. [2]
  • 2022: Jardiance gained another FDA approval for the treatment of heart failure. Heart failure is a chronic condition where the heart cannot pump enough blood to meet the body's needs. [3]
  • 2023: Jardiance was approved to reduce the risk of disease progression and cardiovascular problems in adults with chronic kidney disease. This approval will help preserve kidney function and reduce the likelihood of conditions like end-stage kidney disease and cardiovascular death. [4]

Overall, Jardiance has expanded from solely treating type 2 diabetes to also helping protect against some of its complications - cardiovascular death, heart failure, and chronic kidney disease.

How Does Jardiance Work?

The active ingredient in Jardiance is empagliflozin, which belongs to a class of medications called SGLT2 inhibitors. These inhibitors block SGLT2 proteins in the kidneys, which reabsorb glucose from the urine and return it to the bloodstream. [2]

Typically, only about 10% of glucose filtered through the kidneys gets excreted in urine, with the other 90% getting reabsorbed into the body by SGLT2 proteins. [5] However, in someone with diabetes, this reabsorption process can increase blood sugar levels even more. By inhibiting the SGLT2 proteins, Jardiance prevents the kidneys from reabsorbing glucose, allowing excess sugar to pass through the urine instead. [2]

In addition to lowering blood sugar levels, Jardiance provides cardiovascular and kidney benefits.

  • Cardiovascular benefits: Studies show that Jardiance reduces the risk of cardiovascular death by 38% and heart attacks by 14%. [6]
  • CKD benefits: Studies have found that Jardiance reduces the risk of kidney disease progression by 28% and the risk of hospitalization due to CKD by 14%. [7]

What is Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD)?

Anatomical location of kidneys on a man’s back

Your kidneys are two bean-shaped organs near your lower back that are essential to your body. Millions of tiny structures inside each kidney called nephrons act as mini-filtration units. [8] Every 30 minutes, these nephrons filter your blood to remove excess fluid, waste products, and toxins from your body. The filtered blood is then recirculated in your body, while the wastes are excreted as urine. [9]

However, chronic kidney disease (CKD) can damage these essential organs over time, leading to a gradual loss of function. Without proper treatment, wastes can build up in the blood, increasing the risk of heart disease or stroke. [9]

CKD is more common than you may think, affecting one out of every seven adults in the United States. Unfortunately, 90% of those individuals are undiagnosed due to the gradual onset of symptoms with CKD. [10]

If you have type 2 diabetes, you should be especially aware of the risk of kidney damage. Around one-third of people with diabetes will develop some degree of kidney damage, making diabetes the leading cause of kidney failure in the United States. [11]

Jardiance and Chronic Kidney Disease

Woman suffering from kidney pain

In 2023, the FDA approved Jardiance (empagliflozin) to treat chronic kidney disease (CKD) based on results from the EMPA-KIDNEY trial. This approval provides physicians with another tool to help slow the progression of CKD in adults. [11]

Jardiance has proven to be effective in reducing the risk of CKD progression in patients with and without diabetes. By slowing down the progression of CKD, Jardiance can help patients avoid the need for dialysis or a kidney transplant, which can hurt their overall quality of life. [11]


The phase 3 EMPA-KIDNEY trial provided compelling evidence that Jardiance can slow the progression of kidney disease and reduce the risk of kidney failure, cardiovascular events, and hospitalization for diabetic and non-diabetic patients. [11]

We’ve included details of the participants in this clinical trial below:

  • The trial involved 6609 adults with CKD
  • Participants had an eGFR between 45 and 90
  • Participants had a urine albumin to creatinine ratio (UACR) greater than 200 mg/g
  • Approximately 44% of participants had type 2 diabetes
  • Participants were randomly assigned to receive either empagliflozin (Jardiance) 10 mg or a placebo once daily [11]

The study's outcomes were highly promising. The results highlighted the significant potential Jardiance holds in improving the lives of those with CKD.

  • The risk of kidney disease progression and cardiovascular death was reduced by 28%
  • The risk of hospitalization was reduced by 14% [11]

How to Take Jardiance for CKD

The FDA-recommended Jardiance dosage for treating CKD is 10 mg once daily, with or without food. This is the dosage that was found effective in clinical trials for reducing the risk of:

  • eGFR decline
  • End-stage kidney disease
  • Hospitalization due to CKD [1]

However, your doctor may adjust the dosage based on kidney function and symptoms. They will assess your circumstances, considering your medical history and any other medications you may be taking.

It's important to note that Jardiance may not be suitable for everyone with chronic kidney disease. The FDA advises against using Jardiance if you have:

  • Polycystic kidney disease
  • Patients with a recent history of intravenous immunosuppressive therapy for kidney disease
  • Patients taking more than 45 mg of prednisone for kidney disease
  • Patients with type 2 diabetes who have an eGFR of less than 30 [11]


Jardiance has proven to be more than just a diabetes management medication. Recent clinical trials have demonstrated its ability to slow the progression of chronic kidney disease and reduce complications like cardiovascular events. This promising medication provides a new tool for healthcare providers and patients to manage CKD.

To learn more about CKD, visit our chronic kidney disease blog.

The content in this article is intended for informational purposes only. This website does not provide medical advice. In all circumstances, you should always seek the advice of your physician and/or other qualified health professionals(s) for drug, medical condition, or treatment advice. The content provided on this website is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment.