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Release: March 22, 2000

UI Health Care specialist to observe National Kidney Month with online chat

IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Lawrence G. Hunsicker, M.D., University of Iowa professor of internal medicine, will lead an hour-long, online question-and-answer discussion on kidney disease and transplants with a nationwide audience from 8:30 to 9:30 a.m. (CST) Thursday, March 23.

The online chat will be hosted by and can be accessed by entering through the home page under "Upcoming Events."

March is National Kidney Month. The body depends on the kidneys to excrete many waste products and maintain the correct balance of water and salts. A kidney disorder interferes with these important functions. The symptoms of kidney disease depend on the underlying cause. They are often mild and vague until a late stage in the disease. Kidney disease may be caused by many factors, such as injury, infection, cancer or disorders in other parts of the body. In some cases, kidney disease may occur without apparent cause.

After receiving his medical degree from Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, Hunsicker completed his residency in internal medicine at the Naval Hospital in Stalbans, N.Y. He completed fellowships in nephrology at Cornell Cooperating Hospitals in New York City, Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston, and Harvard Medical School in Cambridge, Mass. Hunsicker joined the UI faculty in 1976. His clinical expertise is in renal transplantation, progressive renal disease and clinical nephrology.

A calendar of other upcoming chats by UI Health Care professionals and dialogue from past chats can be accessed by logging on to and clicking on the logo at the bottom of the page.

UI Health Care's partnership with is part of an increasing trend in health care toward enhancing consumer services through the Internet. According to recent statistics compiled by Cyber Dialogue, a New York firm that tracks Internet commerce, there are approximately 22 million World Wide Web users seeking health information over the Internet. Cyber Dialogue projects that number to increase to 33 million over the next year.

University of Iowa Health Care describes the partnership between the UI College of Medicine and the UI Hospitals and Clinics and the patient care, medical education and research programs and services they provide.